A Hundred Miles or More: A Collection
4 stars (out of 5)
This 16-track, 68-minute collection – a mix of new, “best of,” and released-elsewhere tracks – is the second of Krauss’ career.
The first, 1995’s Now That I’ve Found You, contained songs – the title track, “Oh, Atlanta,” and “When You Say Nothing at All” – that made the bluegrass prodigy into a country and pop star.
Krauss has continued making great music since, not only with her band Union Station, but solo projects, soundtracks, tributes and duets with other stars. A Hundred Miles or More is a treasure because it puts many of those far-flung gems in one place. And once they’re in one place, they more clearly illustrate Krauss’ uncanny ability to turn into a thing of rare beauty just about any song of any style, such as:
- the grand gospel of “Down to the River to Pray” from the O Brother soundtrack
- the keening death-ballad “Molly Ban” from The Chieftains’ Down the Old Plank Road: The Nashville Sessions
- “Whiskey Lullaby,” the exquisitely sad duet with Brad Paisley
- epic arrangements of “The Scarlet Tide” and “You Will Be My Ain True Love” from the Cold Mountain soundtrack
- “How’s the World Treating You,” a smooth Louvin Brothers duet with James Taylor
- and the irrepressibly poppy duet with John Waite on his 1984 #1 hit “Missing You” (Just hearing her sing the line “Since you’ve been gone…away” on this one is worth the price of the CD or the download)
The five new cuts are lush, soft rock arrangements that would have fit well on her underrated 1999 solo project Forget About It. “You’re Just a Country Boy” is the best of these, with Krauss’ voice at its tender best.
A little more bluegrass featuring Krauss’ fiddle skills would have been nice, as would the inclusion of her cover of Blind Faith’s “Can’t Find My Way Home” from the Crossing Jordan soundtrack, but this one will make a a great soundtrack for the coming summer nights.
by Aaron Keith Harris