CD Hold with Hope * (CD 528571),
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Hold with Hope *
1. Pastures of Plenty
2. Water's So Cold
4. Can't Stop a Train
5. Darkness, Darkness
6. Old, Old House
7. One Time One Night
8. Chenango County Blues
9. Long, Long Drea
10. Faded Prints (Of Country Living)
12. Hold With Hope
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 266
Chuck Eller; Lane Gibson; Chas Eller
Breakaway: Paul Miller (vocals, guitar); Taylor Armerding (vocals, mandolin); Peter Riley (vocals, bass); Junior Barber (guitar); Scott Hopkins (banjo, background vocals); Gene White Jr. (mandolin, fiddle).
Producers: Breakaway, Lane Gibson, Chuck Eller.
Recorded at Charles Eller Studios, Charlotte, Vermont between December 1999 and March 2000.
Personnel: Paul Miller (vocals, guitar); Taylor Armerding (vocals, mandolin); Peter Riley (vocals); Junior Barber (guitar); Scott Hopkins (banjo).
Audio Mixers: Lane Gibson; Chas Eller.
Liner Note Author: Ron Thomason.
Recording information: Charles Eller Studios, Charlotte, VT (12/1999-03/2000).
New England bluegrass band Breakaway has undergone extensive personnel changes since its last album, 1997's Watershed. Guitarist Andy Greene and mandolinist Andy Sacher have left, and since both were also lead vocalists and songwriters this change has had a considerable effect on the ensemble's sound. Remaining members Scott Hopkins, Peter Riley, and Gene White Jr. have regrouped, adding guitarist/singer Paul Miller as a permanent member, with mandolinist/singer Taylor Amerding credited as a guest but participating as though he was an equal with the others. Thus, the sound has been filled out, but Greene's presence as a songwriter is still missed. Breakaway has turned more to cover songs as a result, contributing only four originals here, as opposed to the seven on the previous album. For their covers they have turned to some songwriters not usually associated with bluegrass music, including Woody Guthrie ("Pastures of Plenty"), Jesse Colin Young (an instrumental "Darkness, Darkness"), and David Hidalgo and Louis Perez of Los Lobos ("One Time, One Night"). None of the songs sound out of place, however, and more traditional country fare such as Harlan Howard's "Water's So Cold" and George Jones' "Old, Old House" also fits in well. The original material -- two Hopkins instrumentals and two songs by Riley -- is adequate. The result is an album that does nothing to tarnish Breakaway's reputation, but leaves them where they were before, a novelty in the sense of being a competent bluegrass unit from a region not usually associated with the music. ~ William Ruhlmann
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Gadfly Records 266
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