Home Read Classic Album Review: Old Crow Medicine Show | O.C.M.S.

Classic Album Review: Old Crow Medicine Show | O.C.M.S.

The former itinerant buskers settle down in the studio for this impressive debut LP.

This came out in 2004 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Once upon a time, it is said, you could have caught these New York bluegrass vagabonds at The Forks as they busked their way across the country. Not any more.

These days, Old Crow Medicine Show have moved on to bigger and better — a home base in Nashville, gigs at the Grand Ole Opry and this self-titled debut CD. For all their career progress, though, this the quintet’s music remains satisfyingly rustic, thanks to an all-acoustic lineup of banjo, fiddle, guitar and doghouse bass. Divided between traditional Americana chestnuts like CC Rider and a handful of similar-sounding originals — with a cover of Bob Dylan’s Wagon Wheel tossed in for good measure — O.C.M.S. has the relaxed atmosphere of a back-porch jam, with the players sharing the spotlight, trading licks and not letting the odd fluffed note kill their buzz. If you want to join in the fun, you’re gonna have to pick up this album — because I don’t expect they’ll be passing the hat at The Forks again anytime soon.