It is obvious from this new album that Flatt Lonesome are here to stay as a prominent bluegrass band dedicated to being professional in every way, performing and recording at a high level. But, they are also human, and this project seems to mark a specific time in the group’s emotional journey.
Silence In These Walls begins with the song “All My Life,” written by Paul Harrigill and Tim Stafford, which sets the melancholy tone of the album. It’s a song about forlorn feelings and human angst. It’s followed by the appropriately-titled “It’s Just Sad,” which contains a lyric that became the title of the album. That’s followed by cuts such as “Build Me A Bridge (To Get Me Over You),” “I’m Not Afraid To Be Alone,” “Cry Oh Cry,” “Highway Of Pain,” “Gently Please Tell Me Goodbye,” “Happy ’Til He Comes,” and “Falling.” All of these songs are solid, written by artists such as Wyatt McCubbin, Wade Kirby, James Chamberlain, Jason Hursey, Glenn Daughin, and more, along with seven cuts written by the members of Flatt Lonesome. All of the performances are wonderful and the family harmonies are simply beautiful.
The first listen through, I kept waiting for an upbeat barnburner that Flatt Lonesome is known for, but it never comes. All of the songs are mid-tempo or slower. And then I remember that the band lost a grandfather as this album was in the works, while at the same time Kelsi and Paul Harrigill brought their first baby in to the world. A second listen unveils the quality of this project. The cycle of life kicks into gear when in your 20s, and this well-done album showcases those emotions and the maturity that comes along with it. (Mountain Home, P.O. Box 829, Arden, NC 28704, www.mountainhomemusiccompany.com.)DH