Ricky Skaggs - Mosaic

Published Friday 22nd October 2010
Ricky Skaggs - Mosaic
Ricky Skaggs - Mosaic

STYLE: Country
RATING 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 95808-17020
LABEL: Skaggs Family 6989010102

Reviewed by Peter Timmis

Whilst the response to this latest album from the country and bluegrass veteran has been largely favourable there has been criticism from some corners of the country community that 'Mosaic' is too radical and experimental. Complaints have also been made about Ricky's new look - sure, his hair's a little longer but it's not like he's sporting a Mohican. One is almost reminded of the cries of "Judas" directed towards Bob Dylan when he plugged in his Stratocaster all those years ago. In truth, what we have here is a rather fine alt country record that stops to take in the occasional Celtic or eastern influence in the same way that a Neil Young or Steve Earle album might do. The songs here are all original compositions written by Ricky and producer George Kennedy (who also contributes guitar and backing vocals). The record opens with the title track which is a soulful country rocker that Skaggs sings beautifully, his voice finding the perfect balance between sweetness and grit. Other highlights include the epic "Fire From The Sky" that closes with electric guitar and crashes of thunder (the latter are credited to God in the sleevenotes) and the delicate, piano-led "A Walk Of Love". There's also one or two guests on the record including Ricky's daughter Molly, rock icon Peter Frampton and, most surprisingly of all, 101 year old George Beverly Shea appearing between tracks singing a snippet of "I'd Rather Have Jesus" that he composed in 1932. A hugely listenable and enjoyable record that may just win Ricky some new fans.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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