NU-BLU, “The Blu-Disc,” Pinecastle. 12 tracks.
The past eight years have been a roller-coaster ride for Nu-Blu.
Carolyn and Daniel Routh formed the North Carolina-based band in 2003.
That fall, she suffered two strokes, lost her ability to speak as well as the use of her right side — and almost lost her life.
But Carolyn Routh battled back to become a fine lead singer and bass player.
In 2009, Nu-Blu signed with Pinecastle Records, one of the genre’s most respected labels.
But a few months later, before the band’s new album, “Nights,” could be released, Pinecastle closed its doors.
The Rouths decided to self-release the album and its first single, “Spin on the Red Brick Floor.”
It scored well on several charts and Nu-Blu was named 2010 Country Band of the Year by the Carolina Music Awards.
Then, in September 2010, the Pinecastle label was purchased and reopened. And Nu-Blu was signed to a new contract.
And now, the new album is ready.
The first single, “Other Woman’s Blues,” is Jolene’s answer to Dolly Parton. It naturally works better if listeners are familiar with Parton’s “Jolene.” But it stands on its own pretty well.
“Look To You” is a folky type of bluegrass that says it’s up to you to change the problems you see in the world.
“Roses and Rust” is a ballad about the funeral of a woman who has outlived her friends.
In “That’s Who I’m Supposed To Me,” a panhandler tells a woman how he wound up on the streets.
“Family Quilt” is a ballad about a quilt made of discarded clothes and how like a family, it’s stitched together well.
“Just Trying to Get Home” is a duet with Carolyn Routh and band member Levi Austin about being on the road and dreaming of home.
Kendall Gates, the mandolin player, is the fourth member of the band. Greg Luck adds his fiddle and Rob Ickes, his Dobro, to the project.
Good album by a good band.
Can’t find it in stores? Try www.nu-blu.com