Robert Plant at Hard Rock Live April 14

Robert Plant raised a lot more than sand on that 2007 album with Alison Krauss, one of the very few Americana records to go platinum since O Brother, Where Art Thou? He also raised five Grammys in February 2009 — the disc was released too late to make the '08 awards — and resurrected a solo career that had been overshadowed by a levee-breaking flood of new/reissued Led Zeppelin product and that group's November 2007 reunion concert in London.

Not surprisingly, Plant has extended his rootsy honeymoon with both a new group and album named after his and John Bonham's pre-Zep rock outfit, Band of Joy. Released last September, the album includes covers of hillbilly-gospel standard "Satan, Your Kingdom Must Come Down," Los Lobos's "Angel Band," and two from Minneapolis slowcore trio Low's 2005 LP, The Great Destroyer. In a way, it's a reprise of Raising Sand with a couple of key substitutions: A-list Nashville utility man Buddy Miller subbing for T-Bone Burnett as producer and bandleader, and redheaded Austin singer-songwriter Patty Griffin replacing Krauss as Plant's main female foil.

 
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