Review | Songlines

Fall Like Rain

Rating: ★★★★

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Album and Artist Details


Justin Moses


Mountain Fever Records


From the opening title-track, a brilliantly rendered bluegrass cover of Eric Clapton’s song from his 1998 LP Pilgrim, to the closing ‘Locust Hill’, a breathtaking speedball instrumental, Justin Moses’ first major self-produced release is a sparkling setting of ten distinctly cut gems.

Moses is one of bluegrass’ finest multi-instrumentalists, equally adept on guitar, banjo and mandolin. Fall Like Rain burnishes his reputation further with a display of songwriting acumen and a lithe, high tenor voice, which lends sharp sonority and emotional expression to six of the ten tracks. The ridiculously talented supporting cast includes mandolinist extraordinaire Sierra Hull (Moses’ wife), Dan Tyminski (lead vocal, guitar), Stuart Duncan (fiddle), Bryan Sutton (guitar) and Barry Bales (acoustic bass). Guest vocalists include International Bluegrass Hall of Famer Del McCoury, who kicks up Dennis Linde’s ‘My Baby’s Gone’ (originally recorded by The Judds in 1984) into the high barn rafters, and Shawn Lane, who imbues ‘Looking for a Place’ with winsome charm. Featuring Jegir Samir on oud and Mehdi Nuri on daf and darbuka, ‘Walking to Lebanon’ represents Moses’ affinity for serious social commentary, in this case, the plight of Middle Eastern refugees, while establishing a remarkable connection between bluegrass and the traditional music of the war-torn region.

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