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Mandolinist found the punch he needed after Nickel Creek


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Chris Thile knows his bluegrass, but Bartok, Debussy and Radiohead are among the influences on his new music.

By Wayne Bledsoe

Chris Thile means no offense as he leaves the popular acoustic band Nickel Creek and goes off into more unpredictable musical excursions, including his new group the Punch Brothers.

"There's a misconception in the bluegrass community that we're trying to stir things up, that we're trying to be controversial or disrespectful to the folk music that's come before us or that we're getting all up on our high horse," says Thile in a call from New York. "That couldn't be further from the truth."

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