Flyinshoes Review

Welcome to FSR our Roots Music Reviewers & Pod/broadcasters Community

Really make a difference and open up another revenue stream doing It - all House Concert Hub Member are eligible for Gold Standard Membership to iMTV & half the revenue of any subscribers you sign up. Please click through for more info and to be part of the adventure



It is always a special day when a new album featuring the multi-talented Tim O’Brien comes along, and Where The River Meets The Road is one is no exception. O’Brien isn’t only a master of the fiddle, guitar, mandolin, banjo and bouzouki and a great songwriter (and fine producer) but he is also an amazing maker of concept albums. The Crossing and Two Journeys plus Songs From The Mountain (songs, tunes and hymns either directly or indirectly referred to in Charles Frazier’s book Cold Mountain) made with Dirk Powell and John Herrmann. Released in 1998, way before the original soundtrack recording from the movie, Cold Mountain are all must hear recordings. As for where and how high in the ratings do I view Where The River Meets The Road, I believe it is one of his best ever. Possessing greater warmth and fluidity than on some albums O'Brien lifts the bar!      


Though a long time resident of Nashville O’Brien hasn’t forgotten his West Virginia roots over the years. Born and raised in Wheeling, West Virginia he was also behind the record Always Lift Him Up a Tribute To Alfred Reed. This as he helped assemble various acts to perform his work, those taking part ranged from Connie Smith and Marty Stuart to Kathy Mattea by way of John Lilly, Charlie McCoy, Todd Burge, Ray Benson, Little Jimmy Dickens, Larry Groce and his own sister, Mollie O’Brien plus others. The West Virginia Music Hall Of Famer has also worked with the WVMHF the last ten years, and this time he's come through with an of material written by acts from his home state. One such act, John Lilly provides gospel ode “Friday, Sunday's Coming” has Mollie provide some crucial work as she is given freedom the express herself; and she isn't the only one on the record, just take a listen to the pickers make hay on the Bailes' Brothers “Drunkard's Grave” if you need a quick fix of real country music. Eat your heart out BR5-49 as Scruggs and Victor Krauss (upright bass) etc mop up! 


Added to songs from far-reaching acts Bill Withers, Groce, Lilly, Curly Ray Cline (long time member of Ralph Stanley’s band, Rank Strangers), Hazel Dickens, A.P Carter and the Bailes Brothers are two songs of his own plus two covers of traditional fare. Talking about his own work, they could not be stronger or more poignant than “Guardian Angel” that speaks of an older sister that died before he got to know her, she was only six. Featuring Mollie on vocals and Tim’s soulful tones every lyric is beautifully underlined. It is classic O’Brien. Among other things it offers some of the finest mandolin one could wish for (Stuart Duncan). While Duncan’s fiddle, Norm Pikelny’s banjo, Mike Bub’s upright bass support the bluegrass paced “Where The River Meets The Road”, a historic fashioned song it retraces the journey of his great, great grandfather, Thomas O’Brien. Who made the journey from Ireland in the 1800s to the eastern banks of the Ohio River to Wheeling. Both are, as you would expect impress greatly. Likewise goes for Groce’s “When The Mist Drifts Away” , and a jaunty version of “My Old Brown Coat And Me” (trad. arr. Doc Williams). Kenny Malone Djembe, Dennis Crouch (upright bass), Nathaniel Smith (cello) join O’Brien; who apart from singing faultless lead vocal he likewise hits the mark on fiddle and bouzouki. On reflection I believe, musically it contains arguably the finest blend on the record. But hey! Cries out my inner soul as O’Brien in the company of Chris Stapleton (he also does his stuff on Billy Edd Wheeler’s fantastic bluegrass tune “High Flying Bird”) and Mattea on vocals. While fans of pedal steel and masterful country electric guitar Chris Scruggs cooks up something special.


Other songs to capture my attention Hazel Dickens’ heart-tugging “Few Old Memories”, and doesn’t he nail it. He is helped by among others his partner Jan Fabricius on harmony vocals. She likewise hits stride on “Little Annie” as an old Carter Family favourite is dusted down, and have O’Brien likewise dust down his fiddle! I am pleased to report isn’t the only time it ventures out of its case, because he provides the record also features some beautiful traditional fiddle playing on “Queen Of The Earth And Child Of The Skies” (trad), and he has Smith join him on a duet instrumental of the rarest quality.


                                                                         Maurice Hope 

Views: 33

Add a Comment

You need to be a member of Flyinshoes Review to add comments!

Join Flyinshoes Review


Keep the wheels on the hub

Americana Boogie Radio

Check out the new Americana Boogie Radio station featuring hand-picked Americana roots music!

The Voice of The Independent Artists

Blues & Roots Radio

The House Concert Hub and FSR are affiliated to Concert Window.

Video-cast your shows here and help fund the hub too. 

Would like to contribute to FSR and the House Concert Hub? Please help keep the wheels on the hub, this site is run on House Concert Principles and relies on your donation. Thank You for keeping this in mind



Face Book

The Medicine Show is the home of the House Concert here is our rolling news


This site is the sister site to The House Concert Hub community and has been inherited in the main by kind donation of Shaun Belcher and Trailer Star.

It is the sum total of over ten years of tending a tender love of music by Shaun, a life time with Trailer Star and five or so years of an association with Rob Ellen from Medicine Music.

The House Concert Hub community will use it for the purpose of providing a online, all singing all dancing, review and preview area for the music of the community, and the music community at large. Have a look around tell your friends use the share button, tell the world.

We need reviewers, the idea is we have a correspondents in every area of the musical global village, it will be edited and co-ordinated by Rob Ellen of Medicine Music publicist promoter and presenter, if you wish to subscribe as a correspondent, join up here and drop Rob a line, he will send you cd's and send you to shows, display and publicise your content.

Here starts an other adventure.

  Visit The House Concert European Hub (& Acoustic Music Club Network)

Year 2016

Levi Parham
90 pts.
These American Blues
Music Road Records
Martha Fields
86 pts.
Southern White Lies
Carter Sampson
75 pts.
Wilder Side
Anna Elizabeth Laube
65 pts.
Ahh...Pockets! Records
Michael McDermott
60 pts.
Willow Springs
Pauper Sky Records
Shovels & Rope
54 pts.
Little Seeds
New West
Robert Ellis
53 pts.
Robert Ellis
New West Records
Sturgill Simpson
52 pts.
A Sailor’s Guide to Earth
Atlantic Records
Douglas Greer
50 pts.
Baja Louisiana
Zilker Park Records
Lucinda Williams
46 pts.
The Ghosts Of Highway 20
Highway 20 Records
Buddy Miller & Friends
44 pts.
Cayamo Sessions at Sea
New West Records
Wink Burcham
43 pts.
Cleveland Summer Nights
Continental Song City
Eric Brace & Peter Cooper
42 pts.
C&O Canal
Red Beet Records
Brent Cobb
41 pts.
Shine On A Rainy Day
Elektra Records
Daniel Romano
41 pts.
New West
Leonard Cohen
41 pts.
You Want it Darker
Sony Music
Christian Kjellvander
40 pts.
A Village: Natural Light
Tapete Records
Drive-By Truckers
39 pts.
American Band
ATO Records
Birds of Chicago
38 pts.
Real Midnight
Five Head Entertainment
John Prine
37 pts.
For Better, or Worse
Oh Boy Records
The Cactus Blossoms
36 pts.
You’re Dreaming
Red House Records
Richmond Fontaine
35 pts.
You Can’t Go Back
Décor Records
Gillian Welch
34 pts.
Boots No.1: The Official Revival Bootleg
Acony Records
Sarah Jarosz
33 pts.
Sugar Hill
Joe Purdy
32 pts.
Who Will Be Next?
Mudtown Crier Records
The Devil Makes Three
32 pts.
Redemption & Ruin
New West

© 2017   Created by The Medicine Show.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service

Site Meter