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Robert and Alison: Much needed melancholy delight

22 September 2007 1,883 views No Comment

In amongst all the craziness of the past couple of weeks, much needed calm arrived via the new album by Robert Plant and Alison Krauss.

Raising Sand is a melancholy delight. Much more than a mere collaboration, this is two artists at the top of their game applying their unique vocal talents with masterful subtlety .This is the complete antidote to the familiar Plant histrionics of yore. You don’t have to be a bluegrass or country fan to appreciate the depth of beauty contained in performances such as Killing The Blues, Stick With Me Baby and the mournful Polly Come Home. Late night nuggets that will accompany the cold and dark nights of autumn and winter ahead. Uncut magazine describe this as one of the best things Robert has done in 30 years. It may not be immediately apparent but repeated plays indicate they are not wrong.

In a world gone crazy… Raising Sand is a calm amongst the storm.

Talking of which…. has there ever been a couple of weeks like this? Certainly not since the since the announcement of Knebworth way back when. You can imagine how it’s been here – emails aplenty, garbled phone calls from across the continents, internet meltdown, millions hitting the Ahmet site…all in the name of a band who have not played together in their homeland officially for 27 years.

Being in attendance at the press conference was incredibly exciting. I was able to remind Harvey Goldsmith the story of how he once asked me to take a pic with his camera of himself with Ahmet at the side of the stage before the Zep Frankfurt show in Europe 1980. He couldn’t recall if it came out (ah the curse of the Olympus Trip camera!) but hey it was a long time ago!.

I came away with my head reeling. That poster image of the O2 gig is just surreal. One thing’s for sure though. We all knew they were and are the best…now the whole world does.

Elsewhere it’s been business as usual (or as much as it could be), as I get down to work on the next TBL planned for later this year, survive I hope yet another retail upheaval (Virgin Megastore RIP) and witness yet another Spurs defeat to the old enemy. Some things don’t change!

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