Exposé print issues (1993-2011)
Passionfix — Blue Indigo
(Passionfix Music no#, 2022, CD / DL)
by Peter Thelen, Published 2022-10-30
Seems like every year around August, Passionfix releases a new album, or at least such is the case in recent years. Given that the band hasn’t performed live in decades, keeping that kind of schedule is a lot easier to do than if they were out on the road all the time, but then again, not performing doesn’t do a lot for expanding your fan base. In fact one might suspect that most folks have never heard of the band, which is a shame because they have a lot going for them. From great songwriting to superb playing, as well as an outstanding lead singer in Kelly Secret, the group brings forth sounds that echo from the 80s to the present; at any time one might be reminded of The Motels, Fleetwood Mac, The Pretenders, and many others, but Secret’s voice makes their songs a special kind of unique. The band remains the same as on several previous releases, with longtime members Dave Kelly (guitar, keyboards, compositions and lyrics) and bassist / guitarist Mike Kearney being the cornerstones of the band since their earliest days, with relative newcomers Secret and drummer Simon Harris rounding out the lineup, but even at that, this group has been together for several years, and in the process become amazingly cohesive. The album launches with the title track, one of the most powerful entries among the album’s thirteen, with amazing shifting and ever-changing rhythms, with an ongoing keyboard solo that seems to stretch out through the entire song, while Secret drives home the thoughtful lyrics, harmonizing with herself at several points. The pace slows for “The Gambler,” with its echoey refrain and jangly guitars pushing the piece forward — it’s one of those songs that will get stuck in your consciousness for days. “Let Me In” picks up the pace again, and while Secret’s delivery of the lyrics takes front and center, Kearney’s bass figure and Harris’ brisk drumming underscore the piece nicely. Several other standouts like the thoughtful “Round and Around,” “Figure Eight,” “Yesterday’s News,” the acoustic guitar based “Walls,” and “Scarlett” easily showcase the finest the band has to offer. While the distance between 2020’s This and That and 2021’s Mess was incremental, with the release of Blue Indigo, Passionfix has taken a bold step forward.
Related artist(s): Passionfix
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