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The husband and wife duo of Doni Zasloff and Eric Lindberg, released Beneath The Open Sky, their second full length album and follow up to their critically-acclaimed self-titled debut Nefesh Mountain. The recording was very much a hands-on undertaking for the couple, writing or arranging all 11 songs, as well as co-producing the entire project from start to finish. They recorded it with the instrumental backing of Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Tony Trischka and David Grier, aided by Nefesh Mountain’s touring band members, Alan Grubner on fiddle and Tim Kiah on bass. A dazzling picker in his own right, Lindberg provides lead guitar and banjo throughout, while Zasloff soars with some of the most melodic, incisive and soul-stirring vocals we’ve heard since Mary Travers first took the spotlight.
Using original material, along with four tracks drawing from the folk and old time traditions, Lindberg and Zasloff ingeniously create a beautiful arc throughout Beneath The Open Sky which defines their own genre and world as they see it. Their message is clear from the album’s opening track and rousing call for universal equality “Bound For The Promised Land,” to the closing of their haunting rendition of Irving Berlin’s “Russian Lullaby.” Throughout these songs, you can hear the foundational similarities between bluegrass and Jewish traditions, notably the lure of “home,” the love of nature and the comforts of a like-minded community. Jerusalem Ridge, Rocky Top, Flint Hill and Nefesh Mountain are clearly parts of the same eternal chain.