Raining In Baltimore is Kim Robin's sophomore album, coming four years and many miles of touring after 40 Years Late debuted in 2013.
While Raining In Baltimore is being billed as a bluegrass album it could just as easily be sent out as country, and if you consider the lack of electric instruments and drums, plus a certain twang to the vocals, as a sign of traditional country then I'm not about to argue which genre you put good music into. :-)
The title track of Raining In Baltimore indeed invokes a rainy night in the city, and while it's not the opening track it is a fitting introduction to Kim and especially her strong vocals. It also shows Kim has a real forte in traditional ballads of love and murder. Since she wrote the song it shows up and coming songwriting talent too.
The album opens with "Eye For An Eye," which is of course of murder and revenge, and provides a banjo and fiddle driven toe-tapping intro to Kim and the band.
So you have to follow the murder song with a love song, right? It would be hard to do better than "I'll Be Loving You."
"Raining in Baltimore"
Further down the play list is "My Baby Thinks He's A Train" which shows Kim can pull off the upbeat tunes just as well as the ballads.
The rest of the album is a finely balanced mix of ballads and upbeat tunes. No old chestnuts buried in here, the album sounds thoroughly modern while still harking back to the roots of country and bluegrass.
This album shines on Kim, but she also has a superb band backing her up. Credits go Ron Stewart (Banjo/fiddle/guitar), Adam Steffey (Mandolin), Rickey Wasson (Guitar), Harold Nixon (Bass), and Alicia Wasson with Shannon Slaughter helping out on vocals.
You can't go wrong adding this to your music collection, and hopefully we don't have to wait nearly so long for Kim's next album!
Mark Hudson is a long time local HVBA member and music lover who, unfortunately, had to move away. He misses the local scene but will look for you at Greyfox!.
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