Alison Krauss and her sterling musical partners Union Station boast that rare combination of solid bluegrass cred and a respected presence in mainstream country.

Alison Krauss and her sterling musical partners Union Station boast that rare combination of solid bluegrass cred and a respected presence in mainstream country. A subtle masterpiece, New Favorite will only reinforce their stature. Krauss' wonder of a voice alternately caresses and soars, as on the subdued reaffirmation of "Let Me Touch You for Awhile" (one of a pair of lyrical gems here from the pen of Robert Lee Castleman). The musicianship stuns, with such highlights as the spooky bluegrass of "The Boy Who Wouldn't Hoe Corn" (with soulful Dan Tyminski vocals) and the rollicking instrumental "Choctaw Hayride." Such non-bluegrass cuts as Wendy Waldman's "I'm Gone" and Dan Fogelberg's "Stars" are ethereal beauties in Krauss' hands. From start to finish, this is pure class.—RW

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