Sunday, May 4, 2014

Bruce Cockburn - Stealing Fire

This month marks the thirtieth anniversary of Stealing Fire, the thirteenth studio album from Canadian folk-rock singer Bruce Cockburn. It spent thirty-one weeks on the US Billboard Album chart, peaking at number 74.

Side one begins with "Lovers in a Dangerous Time", a song about young love during the time of political unrest of the 80's Cold War era. This first single went to number 24 on the Canada pop chart and number 8 on the Canada Adult Contemporary chart. Seeing as I grew up and went to college in towns close to the Canadian border, I recall hearing this one now and again back on the radio in the mid-80's. It instantly came back to me upon pulling the album up on Spotify for my review.

"Maybe the Poet" is a celebration of the arts and those wordsmiths who shine a light on life that we might not see otherwise.

"Sahara Gold" mixes some acoustic guitar with a march-like beat to create an exotic, faraway sound. It reminds me a little bit of "Stormy" by Classics IV from 1968.

"Making Contact", the second single, charted at number 80 in Canada. This song about two people getting intimate in a tropical setting features a slight reggae rhythm to it.

The laid-back groove "Peggy's Kitchen Wall" tells of the discovery of a break-in. The song really works for me; by the time I was halfway through I was singing along on the chorus.

Side two opens with "To Raise the Morning Star". Again, you can hear the reggae influences on Cockburn on this one.

The gentle "Nicaragua" takes a personal look at a political hot-spot in the 80's.

"If I Had a Rocket Launcher" is a song about frustration with how a political situation is being handled. It then leads to thoughts of taking matters into one's own hands. As a single, it went to number 88 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and number 49 in Canada.

The album closes with the descriptive imagery "Dust and Diesel".

This was my first listen to Stealing Fire, and I liked the record a lot. This is one I will strongly consider for purchase in the very near future.

No comments: