It is somehow baffling the way that some people look at a music genre like Bluegrass, often underestimating how much craft, musical knowledge, appreciation and talent run within those musicians who carry so passionately the torch of a genre that procures so much joy and good vibes to everybody.
In that respect, there are not so many bands, in the current music business, able to translate at the highest possible level the musical message of authentic pioneers of the genre like Bill Monroe And The Blue Grass Boys or Earl Scruggs and Lester Flatt as well as the American quintet The Infamous Stringdusters does.
Although the collective, formed by Andy Falco on guitar, Chris Pandolfi on banjo, Andy Hall on dobro, Jeremy Garrett on fiddle and Travis Book on double bass has got an enormous versatility and overall passion for so many different music genres, there is no doubts that Bluegrass is the ultimate sonic common ground that finds the band in total agreement and with what outstanding results, as the 2018 win at the Grammys as Best Bluegrass Album with their Laws Of Gravity record clearly indicates.
The American collective's 13th album follows the idea of paying the best and most respectful homage possible to those Bluegrass veterans that so much have influenced and inspired The Infamous Stringdusters since their formation, back in 2006. Their brand new album, although it may be seen more as an EP than a complete record, due to its length, is called A Tribute To Flatt & Scruggs and is the perfect segue to their 2021 record A Tribute To Bill Monroe, where The Infamous Stringdusters wished to pay their respect and gratitude to some of the founding fathers of this highly entertaining genre.
Despite the fact that the album clocks off at just 20 minutes, duration wise, in the 6 songs included in the band's new record, the quality expressed by The Infamous Stringdusters in their personal tribute to the music of banjo player Earl Scruggs and guitarist and singer Lester Flatt is incredibly high.
The way that The Infamous Stringduster execute two of the most renowned classics of Flatt & Scruggs, Blue Ridge Cabin Home and Earl's Breakdown from Flatt & Scruggs' 1957 Foggy Mountain Jamboree album is very much breathtaking; Earls' Breakdown, in particular, captures perfectly the way that The Infamous Stringdusters recorded their new album, by performing all together in the same room and just letting the recording tapes rolling, whilst playing live in the studio.
Needless to say, The Infamous Stringdusters, whilst respectful of the style and the way that their new album's songs were originally recorded by Lester and Scruggs, have developed themselves, as the years go by, a very distinctive and organic way to make music, with a pitch perfect musical and vocal interplay that shine so beautifully throughout all the songs included in A Tribute To Flatt & Scruggs, like I'd Rather Be Alone and Cabin On The Hill, among others.
A Tribute To Flatt & Scruggs is not only an ideal platform to those that, perhaps, rather too quickly, have never dug as deep as they should have into the history and tradition of Bluegrass but also a door to the marvelous sonic world of a band like The Infamous Stringdusters that never cease to sublime and entertain music fans every time, through some rather inspired bodies of work. Just like they have done on their brand new record.
A Tribute To Flatt & Scruggs is out now and it is available to be purchased at The Infamous Stringdusters' Official Website