If you could only say one thing about Spring Creek, it’d be they play bluegrass like it was meant to be played. Traditionally, that is, without the infusion and confusion of other styles that differentiate the “newgrass” branch of the genre.
With their latest album, Way Up On A Mountain, they continue to capture the spirit of their predecessors like the Clinch Mountain Boys or Bill Monroe.
The band (Chris Elliot on banjo, Jessica Smith on bass fiddle, Taylor Sims on guitar and Alex Johnstone on mandolin) formed at dude ranch in the Rocky Mountains and spent time in Texas perfecting their sound before they relocated to the Longmont/Lyons area.
With each member taking lead vocals there’s no chance of getting bored with one voice. And a nice mix of blistering picking (Under the Gun, In Despair), slightly slower-paced ballads (Lonesome Town, It’s Alright My Darlin’), and the waltzy Slow Down keep toes tapping.
Others choice cuts include Drivin’ Me Crazy, which sounds like it could be a long-lost tune from the Bob Wills archive and the single, Try and Catch the Wind – filled with Jessica’s charming twang.
The album, produced by Jeff White, is the group’s third but is their first release on one of the oldest bluegrass labels, Rebel Records. Sally Van Meter (who produced their second album, Lonesome Way To Go) and Michael Cleveland respectively add Scheerhorn resophonic guitar and fiddle.
Visit Spring Creek’s website and check back for interviews with both Taylor and Jessica.