This review is written by Kevin McCarthy, 2/01
"Kevin and Maxine’s Celtic & Folk Music CD Reviews"
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The suspects: Wally Barnick, Bill Griffin and Mike Mullins. Modus operandi: armed with guitar, mandolin and bass, the trio travels under the name The Cache Valley Drifters (CVD). Suspected of: playing music that lives up to the name of their record company. Report all sightings to the bluegrass authorities. Be wary of falling under the spell of their music, for your wallet could become $15 or $30 lighter.
Their CD "White Room" has the most interesting and eclectic set of songs of their two releases. How many bluegrass bands would dare tackle both "White Room" and Paul Simon's "Boy In The Bubble," and adeptly create pleasing versions of each? Their remarkable talent to re-invent songs, ones that may not necessarily be thought of as bluegrass material, sets The Cache Valley Drifters apart from others in the bluegrass vein. Just as with the two previously mentioned cuts, they give Kate Wolf's "Green Eyes" a fresh sound. There is but one straight instrumental on this release.
The "mightyfine.net" CD is boosted by the sly "Hollywood Waltz" and "Eyes Of A Painter." "Hollywood Waltz" stealthily utilizes a woman as a metaphor for Southern California and quietly lambastes those carpetbaggers who love and leave for greener pastures. "Eyes Of A Painter," another Kate Wolf song, is a touching reminiscence of a grandfather figure. "Rhode Island Bride" is a love-and-loss tale but with memories and momentos to provide sustenance. "Rounders" is another grandfather tune--this one much more bittersweet. All the cuts on this release are songs with plenty of bluegrass backing.
Listeners get plenty of the familiar mandolin riffs and fluttering, along with toe-tapping melodies and pleasing, tight vocal harmonies on these two CDs. The CVD style is one of songs but with plenty of instrumental play breaking in and around the lyrics.
Give these guys a try if you want your bluegrass with maybe a little twist now and then.
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