Gibson Brothers | Mayne Stage | Folk & Country | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Sat., Feb. 14, 8 p.m. 2009
Price: $17, %15 in advance
Though this five-piece group from upstate New York usually gets filed under bluegrass, the close-harmony vocal style of Eric and Leigh Gibson connects them to some of classic country’s best singing siblings, among them brother acts like the Delmores, Louvins, and Everlys. Whether they’re tackling unreconstructed honky-tonk, a Tom Petty cover, or a folky original, their sweet, high voices—which remind me a bit of Robbie Fulks—are so magnetically charismatic it’s hard to care what idiom they’re working in. The arrangements on the Gibsons’ most recent album, last year’s Iron & Diamonds (Sugar Hill), frequently employ bluegrass’s pinpoint virtuosity and percussion­-free drive, and there’s plenty of hot picking from mandolinist Rick Hayes, fiddler Clayton Campbell, and the brothers (on banjo and guitar). But heartfelt vocals, not pure technical flash, are clearly the band’s priority—I just wish that weren’t so rare. —Peter Margasak

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