When bluegrass Hall of Famer J.D. Crowe decided to retire his New South at the end of 2012, it didn’t take the group’s members long to decide to carry on. Though they stumbled briefly in picking up a new banjo player — newcomer Josh Hymer arrived too late to participate in the group’s self-titled Rural Rhythm debut — it took no time at all to come up with a name, and the emphasis is surely on the word “drive.” Given how tightly knit and polished Dwight McCall (mandolin), Rickey Wasson (guitar), Matt DeSpain (dobro) and Kyle Perkins (bass) were with Crowe, there’s no reason to think they’d throw over the traces just for novelty’s sake, but the album shows they’ve nevertheless come up with some intriguing incremental changes. Nominally a fresh act, but in reality somewhat grizzled veterans, American Drive is a unique combination of old and new that deserves — and rewards — a good, close listen.
The Station Inn
Show: 8:00 PM
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21 and over