A hybrid of Ethnic, Folk and Celtic musical influences, Flower & McLaren's 4th CD, "Twenty Years-Twenty Rivers," is yet another lively and joyful celebration from accomplished multi-instrumentalists evolving their own unique musical genre in an age of drill-down specialization. Trading instruments and musical textures like a runner changes socks, Flower & McLaren mix and match (acoustic) instruments and moods throughout this musically abundent, 12-song (55+ minutes) album; blending guitar and accordion on an infectious jig ("The Monaghan Jig…"); piano and fiddle on a minor key, down-from-the-mountain-like air ("Rick & Val's Happy Garden Day…"); mandolin and piano on a beautifully solemn ballad ("Sherrill's Lament"); and even ragtime-inspired piano with brushed drums on a bouncy reel ("Sally's Reel"). Regardless of pairing, though, their music is informed with the kind of lived-in and timeless grace that makes you swear these songs have been handed down through generations. And while folk purists are sticklers for tradition and heritage, what ultimately moves music and culture forward are visionaries who draw from the past to fashion art that is right for their times, without being stuck in the moment. "Twenty Years-Twenty Rivers," the terrific new CD by Flower & McLaren, is an organic melding of acoustic and vocal music traditions beyond genre or unnecessary limitations.
-Rice B. & the RadioIndy Reviewer Team
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