Monday, July 15, 2013

Vince Gill lifts 'Firin' Up' beyond its limitations

If we're nominating albums for reappraisal, I'll put forth "FIRIN' UP" by the PURE PRAIRIE LEAGUE.
It sounds better now, perhaps, than it did upon its release.
The band's ninth studio album doesn't get the highest reviews.
Indeed, critic Jim Worbois characterized "Firin' Up" as a "last-gasp effort" by the Pure Prairie League and a "sad end to a band that had begun with such promise."
Admittedly, by the album's 1980 release, previous band leaders Craig Fuller and George Ed Powell were gone, and the music could be mistaken for a second-division version of the EAGLES.
Except for one important detail -- VINCE GILL.
The future solo country star's soaring lead vocals and underrated guitar playing lifts "Firin' Up" beyond its early '80s limitations.
A song such as "She's All Mine" demonstrates the warmth Gill's tenor could lend. He can turn an otherwise nondescript tune into something memorable.
I know this fact for certain: "Firin' Up" sure sounds good while driving home on a steamy, late afternoon.


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