Blaze Of Glory

Marshall Chapman

Tall Girl Records, 2013

http://www.tallgirl.com

REVIEW BY: David Bowling

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 06/16/2013

Marshall Chapman is now over 40 years into her stellar music career and she has become even more prolific with the passage of time. During the past three years, she has had a book published, seen her musical Good Ol’ Girls open off Broadway, acted in a movie with Gwyneth Paltrow, and released the well-received album, my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Big Lonesome. She has now returned with the thirteenth studio album of her career, Blaze Of Glory.

It is a comfortable release that picks up where her last one left off. Chapman provides the lead vocals and rhythm guitar and is supported by lead guitarist Will Kimbrough, drummer Casey Wood, keyboardist Mike Utley, and bassist Jim Mayer.

She has always been able been able to fuse her Americana lyrics with a rock/pop sound, and Blaze of Glory is no exception. If there is one area in which she has consistently improved, it is as a songwriter. She wrote eight of the 11 tracks and co-wrote one more on this disc. She is able to put her thoughts and stories into words and wrap them in memorable melodies.

The album starts out strong with “Love In The Wind,” which has a 1950s rock ‘n’ roll vibe. She shares the lead vocal with Todd Snider as they explore her inner feelings. She then transitions to power pop on “I Don’t Want Nobody.”

Songs such as “Dreams & Memories,” the title track, and “Not Afraid To Die” reflect the personal side of Chapman’s songwriting and life as they explore her philosophy and life journey.

The two cover songs were chosen well. Hoagy Carmichael’s “The Nearness Of You” is delivered in a laidback style, while the Delmore Brothers old country classic “Blues Stay Away From Me” is moved over from its bluegrass roots to Chapman’s Americana style.

Marshall Chapman is now in her mid sixties and has carved out an impressive career. Blaze Of Glory will add to her legacy as an album of mature music by an artist who is confident in her skills.

Rating: B+

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