Anna & Elizabeth put their own stamp on twangy traditionals

Anna & Elizabeth‘Anna & Elizabeth’
Anna & Elizabeth (Free Dirt)
4 stars out of 5

The sounds of Appalachia are alive and well thanks to the efforts of Anna & Elizabeth. A twangtastic duo comprised of multi-instrumentalist/vocalist Anna Roberts-Gevalt and vocalist Elizabeth LaPrelle, they put their own stamp on 16 traditional tunes on this self-titled gem.

4PAN1TSPB“Each song has a story,” LaPrelle notes. “Sometimes it’s right there in the owrds. Sometimes it’s in who we heard it from and how they learned it. That story, the story of why the songs endure, feels important for us to tell.”

All it takes is a single spin of the album to realize that Anna & Elizabeth are first-rate storytellers. LaPrelle’s voice is a revelation and the duo soars highest on keepers “Little Black Train,” “Poor Pilgrim of Sorrow,” “Father Neptune,” “Don’t Want to Die in the Storm,” “Troubles,” “Won’t You Come and Sing for Me” and “Grace of God.”

“We aren’t trying to transport people to the past — rather we are trying to bring the past back into the room, bring history into our understanding of the present,” Roberts-Gevalt explains. “The song will always travel far from the source. But we remember.” Mission accomplished. (Jeffrey Sisk)

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