ELLIS PAUL & VANCE GILBERT Side Of The Road (Philo/Rounder Records) Rating: NN
If Garth Brooks and Shania are new country, then Paul and Gilbert are definitely new folk. Just as the former are miles from Don Gibson or Johnny Cash, Paul and Gilbert share little with Woody Guthrie or Pete Seeger other than inspiration. Slick, crisp production fuels this easy-listening set that features some unusual cover choices. They tackle Neil Young, Lucinda Williams and Van Morrison with mixed results. While Young's Comes A Time works, the other two don't, sounding too contrived and forced to have the desired emotional pull. Much better is the original Citizen Of The World, and the Gilbert-penned Alone Down Here.