This album is the kind of country I can handle, with none of the chest thumping boot stomping hysteria of TODAYS HOT COUNTRY radio. Musically it reminds me of Alison Kraus, Emmylou Harris, or Gillian Welch. It also reminds me of Andy Statman and David Grisman's albums "Songs of Our Fathers" and "New Shabbos Waltz." While not every track works for me (My Fixed Point and Oh Moses are a bit heavy handed) the best of them mix humility, passion, and love for God and Judaism with solid songwriting and musicianship.
I've said this a number of times, but I longed for this sort of thing when I was a teenager. I longed for some strong musician and song-writer to sing about things I cared about. I never got it then, but it's starting to happen more often lately. That's why I love this album and absolutely hate one song on it, the third track, What Would David Do. If you edit out the chorus, you'd have an adequate reflection on King David. Not fabulous, but adequate. But then the chorus kicks in "ask yourself, What Would David Do." I wince. I sweat. I shudder. I hit fast forward. C'mon Mare. In the middle of such a heartfelt Jewish album did you have latch onto one of the most trite Christian cliche's of the last decade? sigh.
Valley of the Dry Bones