Review: Fiery Blue "Our Secret"

There probably isn't another American three-person band that has one member in New York City, one in Austin and the final member in California. However, Fiery Blue makes it work, and their stellar debut proved it. Now, the threesome have produced their best work yet with the new album "Our Secret."
Singer-songwriter Simone Stevens (NYC) starts the festivities with the mysterious "Crystal Ball," and the pace actually picks up slightly with the ironically-titled "Slow Down." This folk-country track has radio potential and effectively highlights Gabe Rhodes (Austin, Texas) musicianship and the songwriting talent of Paul Marsteller (San Diego, California)

To understand Fiery Blue, you first have to set aside any musical prejudices because these talented folks carefully fuse elements of rock, pop, country, folk, Americana and blues. Although the combination sounds disjointed, the unorthodox Fiery Blue has found a way to make it work.

"Wheels Up" can best be described as Bonnie Raitt meets Emmylou Harris, which is high praise indeed. "Tears Are Blue" has much of the same charm.  However, the album's biggest surprise is the tender "Little Red Shoes," and the reverent "Eventide" is pitch-perfect and slowly weaves a web that gently lassos the listener and gently brings him in.

"I've Just Seen His Face" is a cool retro-country cut that could actually find a willing audience on the thousands of traditional country radio stations across America. The song takes you back to days gone by. Likewise, "Half A Dance" could have been a Tammy Wynette hit during her heyday.

Fiery Blue saves its best for track 11 of the project with the thought-provoking "The Moon And I." This song could deeply touch the most heartless cynic, and the song is the finest example of the trio's success in blending their talent. "The Moon And I" is an anthemic gem that deserves a wide audience. However, the band's diversity shines through once again on the next song "Sharpshooter" which has a sixties rock vibe reminiscent of Britain's Cilla Black.

However, the band knows how to end strong with the last track "While The Music Plays." While not quite as stirring as "The Moon And I" (few songs are), it is a terrific punctuation mark that fully displays three artists with different skill sets living totally separate lives melding together to create art. "Our Secret" unwittingly exposes the terrific secret of the band, because Gabe, Simone and Paul are all three combining their talents due to their love of art. Listening to Fiery Blue is a intimate experience, and hearing the work of the group gives you the vibrant feeling of finding a unique musical work that you have to share with friends. While secrets are usually supposed to stay under wraps, here's hoping "Our Secret" spreads like wildfire.

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