On The Edge
By David Royko
Weather and Water
Based on this and their previous CD, 2003’s “Movin’ On,” The Greencards are among the best of a new breed of Newgrass bands, which includes such groups as Nickel Creek and Daybreak. Like those two exceptional ensembles, The Greencards feature a female lead singer, in this case bassist Carol Young, and for tastes that are drawn to the open, breezy yet musically powerful sounds of the “new” newgrass, Weather and Water is strongly recommended.
Young’s voice puts one in mind of Dale Ann Bradley’s nimble, breathy pipes, and the two other members of the trio--mandolinist Kym Warner and fiddler Eamon McLaughlin--are as tasty in slower, more reflective numbers (The House on Vine Street) as they dazzling in burners like the instrumental “Marty’s Kitchen.” That track features two guests, each appearing on a handful of cuts, guitarists Bryan Sutton and Pat Flynn, the latter starting to raise his profile again after a decade and a half of working under the radar of most bluegrass fans since the demise of New Grass Revival.
Most of the songs are originals, and they are plump with catchy hooks and pleasing melodies. Add another name to the small but growing list of fine bands that are expanding both the boundaries of bluegrass and the audience for acoustic music.