THE ALEX LEACH BAND 'I'm the Happiest When I'm Moving' MH-1928-CD

THE ALEX LEACH BAND 'I'm the Happiest When I'm Moving' MH-1928-CD

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With the release of their first full-length album for Mountain Home Music Company, The Alex Leach Band and its youthful leader have made a bold statement that their fresh take on bluegrass—one that draws on a wide-ranging set of historical sounds, yet remains as authentic as Alex himself—is just what 2021 needs. Produced by award-winning Americana music icon, Jim Lauderdale, I’m the Happiest When I’m Moving shows off a healthy dose of creativity that builds on, but is never overwhelmed by influences that range from Leach’s tenure as a member of the veteran Clinch Mountain Boys to the exuberant sounds of a myriad of obscure and semi-obscure groups that he has been spinning on-air since he was a pre-teenaged DJ at Knoxville’s legendary WDVX. Indeed, though there are a couple of covers from such groups—and a title track from Lauderdale and Susan Gibson (“Wide Open Spaces”)—on the project, the emphasis is on original songs, with half bearing Leach’s name. And between the uber-traditional sound of “Rambler’s Return,” the folk-flavored lilt of the group’s second single, “October Fall,” and the distinctive melange of “Take Me Back” (written and sung with his wife, Miranda), and all the rest, what emerges is a convincing portrait of a young artist no less comfortable striking out in new directions as he is within the bluegrass mainstream. In addition to vocalist Miranda, the Alex Leach Band’s members—JT Coleman (bass), Joshua Gooding (mandolin), Brandon Masur (banjo)—are, like Leach himself, musically omnivorous students of bluegrass, giving the group both an unusual stylistic depth and a rare ability to sound as if they’d been playing together for decades. And with Leach’s former Clinch Mountain Boys bandmate John Rigsby on hand to supply just the right touches of fiddle, the result is an undeniably impressive introduction. “I love Alex’s writing, picking and singing,” enthuses Lauderdale. “And I think Alex has created new classics with this album. The Alex Leach Band really shines and shows how great they are together.” For those who’ve known Alex Leach only for his mastery of the quintessentially bluegrass Stanley style—and, indeed, for just about everyone—I’m the Happiest When I’m Moving is bound to be a revelation that, for all his devotion to bluegrass tradition, The Alex Leach Band is standing tall in a thoroughly modern musical world.

Track List:

  1. Take the Long Way Home
  2. The Turntable
  3. I'm the Happiest When I'm Movin'
  4. Ellen
  5. Take Me Back
  6. Golden Rule
  7. Rambler's Return
  8. October Fall
  9. James Russell Rag
  10. Mandy Mae
  11. I Can't Live On This Way