Songs of praise can, on occasion, seem slightly hollow in the hands of some maybe less than committed persons but in this case with this Canadian band spirited take on some classic bluegrass material is inspiring. One of the band Barney Bentall has released several albums under his own name but he he is part of a combo who share the vocals and the love.
The stand-out here is a beautiful and moving version of Julie Miller's All My Tears. It is one of those songs that is pure and perfect. The twin voices of Wendy Bird and Angela Harris soar over a subtle but effective acoustic instrumentation. The rest of the album is not that far behind in terms of quality. Over In The Gloryland from the pen of Ralph Stanley or Bill Monroe's Walking In Jerusalem are given a thorough workout that their writers, as well the those of the other songs, would have doubtless approved.
It is the blend of voices here that is intoxicating and compelling. Something that is matched by the band's instrumental prowess, nothing too show-offy mind just solid playing that is perfect for the overall sound. I don't claim to be a huge bluegrass aficionado but this album, along with the recent album from the Tillers, could not fail to move with the sincerity of the motivation and measure applied to making this music.
The album ends, as it should to make things perfect with a rendition of Hank Williams' I Saw The Light which should illuminate all but the dullest spirit. The High Bar Gang aimed high with this project but they easily reached the heights the aimed for.