The Railsplitters perform ‘Jackson Town’

The Railsplitters perform “Jackson Town” at Second Story Garage in Boulder.

Many Colorado bands that are rooted in bluegrass are self-consciously on a boundary-breaking mission, but The Railsplitters tread lightly beyond the genre’s borders. Their music is sometimes universal enough to qualify the Boulder-based Railsplitters simply as a band, rather than a bluegrass band. But they have no problem playing good ol’ bluegrass music.

Why not? Few bands in the state do it better. That’s what we learned when The Railsplitters visited Second Story Garage last week. And that’s what the audience at the RockyGrass bluegrass festival learned in July. The Railsplitters took top honors in the RockyGrass band competition. They join Spring Creek, Hit & Run Bluegrass and other top bluegrass acts that won the competition in years past.

The Railsplitters’ sound is exquisitely balanced — the quartet brings together the time-tested instrumentation of guitar, mandolin, banjo and bass (sometimes Dusty Rider — yup, an incredibly fortunate bluegrass name — trades his banjo for a pedal steel), and their two-guy, two-girl lineup allows for some candy-cake harmonies on their songs, especially the ones they played for us: “Boarding Pass,” “My World” and “Jackson Town.” Their personalities also shine in their interview with Quentin.

What they brought us: A copy of their self-titled new album.

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