Tag Archives: punch brothers

Punch Brothers - The Phosphorescent Blues

posted by Dave on 03.04.15 15:05 in Music Reviews Print  

Punch Brothers seem intent on exploring new territory with each album, yet seem equally intent on staying put. One of these days, they're going to have to commit, and realise they can't retain all their fans with every album, and make the plunge into their own unique identity. Of course, they may simply enjoy the safer and more obvious stuff. Which, as they say, is fair enough.

Four albums in, and Punch Brothers have come a long way from their beginnings on Chris Thile's "How To Grow A Woman From The Ground". On their previous outing, "Who's Feeling Young Now?" the degree to which "bluegrass" was a valid term was lessened considerably. With "the Phosphorescent Blues", the tag seems utterly redundant, as does every variant thereafter ("Prog-grass" being a favourite … horrible terminology indeed).



I'm going to leave aside all references to the fact that Punch Brothers are a technically gifted group: their mastery of their instruments is unquestionable. However, I will say that these technical skills can make for a somewhat tiring experience: the endless cascade of notes, even when slowed, makes for a lot to absorb. There are only so many counterpoint arpeggios that the ear can take before you long for Peter Buck's simplistic eBow playing. That's enough of that.




* The DPM Rating System
When we rate an album or concert etc we rate it on the "Huzzah!" system. A score can be between 1 and 3 huzzahs:
1 Huzzah! - The reviewer likes it. You should give it a listen!
2 Huzzah! - The reviewer recommends it - and is delighted it is part of his/her collection
3 Huzzah! - The reviewer strongly recommends it - and it has already entered heavy rotation on his/her personal playlists.

On rare occasions there may be a 0 Huzzah! review. The reasons will be explained in the article. On equally rare occasions you may even see a 4 Huzzah ... well explain that another time :)

We dont do negative reviews because we review what we like.

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