The Barr Brothers gave us a surprise outtakes EP with Alta Falls back in 2015, but the Montreal outfit are finally ready to deliver a proper full-length follow-up to 2014's Sleeping Operator. Titled Queens of the Breakers, the new LP is out October 13 via Secret City.
During the final part of their career, the Stanley Brothers did most of their recording for the King label, laying down almost 200 sides for the company between 1958 and 1965. All of those tracks are available in box set form should you want them, but the ordinary fan will be satisfied with more selective samplers such as this one, which has a couple dozen cuts originally released in 1961-1966. The Stanley Brothers were a consistent enough act that the songs picked for best-of comps are pretty much up to the taste of the compiler, but this does a fine job both in the quality and the variety of the material presented. In addition to plenty of originals, there are also interpretations of songs by A.P. Carter, Alton Delmore, and traditional items.
For a truly haunted high-lonesome sound, the duo of Ralph and Carter Stanley stands alone in bluegrass. This collection features their earliest recordings, beginning in 1947 for the Rich-R-Tone label, and presents the duo at their rawest and most unbridled. Of all the recordings that bluegrass trailblazers the Stanley Brothers made in their 20 years together, their early Rich-R-Tone cuts are some of the hardest to find-and most exciting. These are essential for any bluegrass collector: Little Maggie; The Jealous Lover; Our Darling's Gone; Death Is Only a Dream; Little Birdie; The Rambler's Blues; The Girl Behind the Bar , and more!