Startin' Fires Bottom Line:Back with his fifth studio release, Blake Shelton shows us lots of diversity in his musical tastes and perhaps a glimpse into the more mature Blake we'll hear in the years to come. Listening to this release showed me a more contemporary country artist. Maybe the title, Startin' Fires is just that. But having said that, it still delivers the Blake Shelton we've all come to know musically.
Startin' Fires Review:The first single released from this collection of songs, "She Wouldn't Be Gone," is one in a handful that show a more contemporary sound for Blake. This song is brilliantly written and tells the heartbreaking realization of how easy it would have been to hold on to a love he has just lost. This handful also includes, "Good At Starin' Fires, "I'll Just Hold On," and "Here I am."
Carried over from his Pure BS collection, in a recent interview I heard Blake say that he also wanted to again include "I Don't Care" on this CD due to it not being released as a single previously and given it's due. I have to agree. It's a tender, "I lost her but I don't care cause that's the only way I can deal with it" song. With a sweet twist, a play on words and circumstance at the end, this song left me with a smile and is easily one of my favorites.
Blake shows his really country side with the first track, "Green" when the very definition of being an uncool backwards country boy is in this song now the "thing" to be, perhaps his own personal version of being country when country wasn't cool. Also very country-ish sounding, and one that's great for dancing is "Country Strong." Also worth mentioning is "Home Sweet Home," which delivers some ear catching vocals.
A Little Bare Skin RugOne of the most anticipated cuts on this CD was written and performed with Blake's current fire, Miranda Lambert. "Bare Skin Rug" did not dissapoint, but was not at all what I was expecting. Knowing Blake's humor, Why on earth would anyone expect a gut wrenching, powerhouse vocal-filled ballad for the public's first taste of what he and Miranda can deliver? Instead, the video for this song could be a new episode of CBS's old series, The Waltons titled, "Mary Ellen's First Taste of Love." Blake could play the bluejean overall-wearing stranger who falls head over hells in love at the first sight of Miranda, playing the barefoot tattered dress-wearin' Mary Ellen, as the two sneek off into the night to experience the first flames of love. Delivered vocally very somber only adds to the humor. The song, even though not what I expected, still delivers two beautiful voices blended in a very memorable song. I look forward to more of what could come from these two who are talented enough to be an addition to a short list of legendary country couples.
Release Date: November 18, 2008 - Warner Brother Records
Startin' Fires Track List:
- Good At Startin' Fires
- She Wouldn't Be Gone
- I'll Just Hold On
- 100 Miles
- Never Lovin' You
- Country Strong
- Home Sweet Home
- This Is Gonna Take All Night
- Here I Am
- I Don't Care
- Bare Skin Rug