30
Jan
15

COLIN JAMES-HEARTS ON FIRE- “SLOW BURN GUMBO” CD REVIEW BY JOHN EMMS

colin James hearts on firecolin james jpeg

Hearts On Fire finds Colin James in an earthy slow burn of reflective song gumbo.

The title track is simply one of the best songs of his career. A steamy song of love and hurt set up against the backdrop of a modern relationship

It kills with Southern ambience.

Next up, the excellent Just A Little Love finds ace guitarist/co-producer Colin Linden, and the famed rhythm section of Willie Weeks and drummer George Receli setting up a shuffle that would make Bonnie Raitt proud.

This album has a lot of quality laid back songs such as the Mark Knopfler influenced How Does It Feel, James’ superb lead vocal on the Sam Cooke-esque groove of You Were Never Mine and one of his most personal songs ever titled Stay.

James has never sounded as vulnerable as he does on Stay.

A song of  understanding, of forgiveness, and of longing Stay would be a high point on any album.

It should be said this is NOT the blues rock album that his previous album Fifteen was.

He has plenty of killer songs in that category from his varied career.

There is the mid-tempo slinky Heartbreak Road with Reese Wynans and the extraordinary talents of vocalists Ann and  Regina McClary and also the roadhouse smoke of Honey Bee.

But in the end, it’s songs like Stay and Dreams Come and Go with lyrics like “I gave it away for a band of gold, “All strung out down on my floor” that strike at the heart of the matter.

This is a brave album.

Like the smell of a spring morning or the haze from a sleepless night the best songs on this album remain with you long after the music fades.

NOTE…ALBUM DUE DATE IS FEB 3, 2015

JOHN EMMS is a 30 year veteran music journalist, Sun Media contributor, songwriter, and radio host.

http://emms.podbean.com/

JOHN’S BLUES AND ROOTS BAND THE SHAFTMEN

https://itunes.apple.com/ca/album/the-worlds-gone-crazy/id673101570

 

 

 

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