Rachael Sage sounds like Tori Amos during “Alright, OK”. The whispered-out vocals and the bouncing of the composition through a number of styles ties eir to Amos’s early work, before the latter petered out (during “Strange Little Girls” and all that followed). The freshness of Sage during the early going of “The Blistering Sun” means a few things: that individuals will have a great role model since both Tori and Ani are increasingly growing less relevant, and that radio stations will have a new star to hoist to the rafters. The styles present in songs like “Featherwoman” put Sage into the pop side of things, but the description is not complete.
There is a heavy amount of Jill Sobule in this song, but there are hints of Sixpence None The Richer and even the Dixie Chicks. “The Blistering Sun” is the current equivalent to any of the earlier Billy Joel or Elton John albums; each track on the disc tells a story while still being something that could hit #1 under the right conditions. There are not very many individuals that are putting music out in quite the same vein as Sage, but there should be. Even when the songs are slower (“93 Maidens”) there is still a quiet fury to Sage’s music that will get individuals’ blood flowing. The disc is funky, and while individuals are not going to mistake this album for a funk album, there is a bounciness present that will get individuals out of their seats and moving around. Tracks have the great ability to all morph together and make “The Blistering Sun” into one long, extensive look into Sage’s psyche.
The tracks may be diverse in their overall sound, but they all share a specific thread that is Sage’s ability to craft impressive tracks that are still perfectly ready for the big time (TRL and the like). Hopefully more individuals will get information about Sage, and a second renaissance of female artists can be what 2006 is known for; along with individuals like Dar Williams, Rachael Sage shows that the genre is not dead and the music produced now in the field may actually be better than that that preceded it. Sage has been through a few discs in eir time, but I do not think that this is a decrease in quality from the previous works of eir. In fact, this may be Sage’s watershed disc; pick the album up and decide on your own.
Top Tracks: Hit Song, Violet or Blue
Rachael Sage – The Blistering Sun / 2006 Mpress Records / 15 Tracks / http://www.rachaelsage.com / Reviewed 25 May 2006