CD Review Published in Sen Magazine Los Angeles 5/95

Tanya Tucker Fire to Fire (Liberty Records)

Tanya Tucker is easy to pass by. She's been around for twenty years and it's hard to get excited about another new album, especially this, her 28th. Is she truly a legend, or just someone who's somehow managed to hang on for this long.

Yet Fire to Fire is impressive. This is an album about love, chronicling both the wonder and the pain, and filled with tales of passion, heartache, separation and support. It varies in style from "Between the Two of Us", a haunting orchestrated ballad about the enduring love of two parents, to a rousing Elvis-styled spiritual, "Find Out What's Happening". "Nobody Dies From a Broken Heart" is a line we all need to hear occasionally, with the message, 'life goes on, move on, be strong'. "I'll Take the Memories" is about dividing up the furniture, etc.: "I'll take the memories /you can have the rest /I'll take the memories /if I can't have you". This is countered with several songs about the power of love, such as the one about running into an old flame while in the company of a new one, "I'll Take Today" (over yesterday any day/ I'll take lying in your arms tonight/ over and above any love I've known") and "Love Will", a sassy, tongue in cheek (but true) testimonial that nothing can conquer pain like love. And in a world where it's easy to feel invisible, "Come in Out of the World" is the strongest show of support, a message that someone out there does care.

Production on this album is excellent, a clean sound without being over-worked and staid, and reinforces the clear messages of the individual songs. The album's showcase is a duet with Willie Nelson, the title track, "Fire to Fire". Tucker has created a well crafted, country-at-it's-best collection that deserves all the airplay and attention it can get. A worthwhile listen.

by Rod Reynolds
© 1995 The Art Dept Los Angeles

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