Dirty Linen (6-7/99, p.67) - "...THE FAMILY is another perfect album from a band that plays the part of misery, pain and high lonesome perfectly."
Del McCoury Band: Del McCoury (vocals, guitar); Rob McCoury (banjo, background vocals); Ronnie McCoury (mandolin, bacground vocals);
Jason Carter (fiddle, background vocals); Mike Bub (bass, background vocals).
Additional personnel: Bobby Osborne, Bela Fleck (vocals); Jerry Douglas (dobro, background vocals).
It's a difficult proposition to work in a genre as tradition-oriented as Bluegrass and nurture one's creativity. If you stray to far from the form, you're branded a sellout, but if you stick too close to it, you're dismissed as an old fogey. At the turn of the millennium, the Del McCoury Band addressed this conflict by attacking the bluegrass tradition with so much pure emotion, technical facility and unimpeachable soul that no one with ears could remain unmoved. As on their simultaneously released Steve Earle collaboration THE MOUNTAIN, the songs on THE FAMILY stay true to the venerated bluegrass tradition, but McCoury and company managed to find something new and unalterably true in that timeless sound. Consequently, THE FAMILY is recommended both to hardcore bluegrass fans and anyone with an interest in American roots-oriented music.