“Where have you been/My long lost friend?”
If the first line fails to hook you, then the remainder of this album would not be worth your investigation. But if it does grab you, if you allow the almost angelic voice to pick you up, then you are going to enjoy the next hour.
“I’m just a whisper of smoke”
Alison Krauss has put together another impressive album, with luminaries in the writing credits and a couple in the harmonies. While having established herself as a bluegrass icon, complete with the Bill Monroe tunes and fiddle riffs to match, Alison is that kind of universal crossover talent that young country wishes it could be. Without going to the length of spectacle that is the mark of Shania Twain or Garth Brooks, Alison places herself in the role of a country-esque artist for which nobody would be ashamed to admit admiration. And all without sacrificing a hint of her integrity as a musician.
It is a heartbreaker of an album. After soaring through a masterful cover of Todd Rundgren’s “I Wouldn’t Have Made Any Difference (If You Loved Me)” and later with “Ghost in this House” – well, it would be best not to listen to this album in the midst of any kind of relationship-based difficulty. There ought to be a warning label. But the songs are as beautiful as they are painful.
In an interview I read a few years back, I believe in the British music magazine Mojo, Alison cheerfully admitted that she had no illusions of being a song-writer, preferring instead to stick to what she does best: singing, playing, performing. The writing talent she has brought on board for Forget About It includes none other than Michael McDonald. Alison takes McDonald’s words in “Empty Heart” and makes them her own, and you believe her.
“Are you leaving?/Are you going?/Did you think you could lose that feeling/Without me knowing?”
If you are strong of heart and appreciative of some beautiful voicework, let this CD take a spin in your stereo. Be careful though. Listening to this CD in your car may provoke fits of wide-eyed rapture, and in Atlanta at least, traffic is already bad enough without your SUV suddenly meandering into the HOV lane while you gaze blankly out the window….