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Blink The Brightest

4.3 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The multi-instrumentalist, who earned a Gold record and two Grammyr nominations for her debut CD, plays violin, piano, keyboards, guitar, and vibes on the new album. 'This record goes back to my core, to the music that I really love, incorporating classical influences, rock and pop, sometimes an r&b or soul flavor,' says Bonham. In search of diverse soundscapes, Bonham co-produced the album with Joey Waronker, who has drummed for REM and Beck, and Greg Collins, who has engineered and mixed records for U2, No Doubt, and Matchbox Twenty, among others. Zoe. 2005.

Amazon.com

Lilith Fair darling Tracy Bonham doesn't have a lot to prove, at least not to anyone who paid attention to 2000's excellent Down Here, but on Blink the Brightest she barrels full-bore through a clutch of carefully chiseled songs as if the world had forgotten her. On some, it's with the force of a Jonatha Brooke--gentle but juiced with wisdom--while on others it's with the brewing intensity of Fiona Apple or the knowing poise of Joan Osbourne. Derivative, though, these tunes are not: "And The World Has the Nerve to Keep Turning" is a dazzling slice of outrage churned in a patient, pretty voice, and "Naked" reveals itself in bold, artful strokes. Where Bonham is at her best, though, is on the experimental-sounding "Wilting Flower." As her voice pulls away from the music and momentarily flutters adrift, you can't help suspecting that there are a lot of smart music buyers in America ready for an explosion of tightly wound female talent, and that this is their disc. --Tammy La Gorce
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 21, 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Zoe
  • ASIN: B0008FPJ6M
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #160,954 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Well, this album is certainly a little less aggressive in it's tone and that's not neccessarily a bad thing, though in this case it might turn out that that's the special something that made her first two albums impressive and engaging efforts. I think a lot of the songs on this album are very good and Tracy's song-writing ability has certainly matured. Still the songs don't tend to "soar" or "rage" or tend to "bare it all raw" like her past efforts. (Think "Kisses harder than me, Mother Mother, The One", etc)

There's just a little bit of an edge that I miss - at least after my first few listens.....instead of the aggressive or raw nature of her first two efforts, this album feels a bit more contemplative, meloncholy and introspective. All in all I'm pleased with the effort and I like what I hear, I just think some of the elements noted above that made Tracy special are not quite as ubiquotous as they were in her past efforts.

Still, losing the rage and rawness of one's youth is to be expected and one can only harness such a muse for a brief time so it's not wholly unexpected that she mature into the songwriter that shows up on this album.

I feel this has been a largely negative review and that's not really what I wanted to convey. Basically, I like the album a lot, it will probably grow on me even more on repeat listens and by and large it's an excellent effort.
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Format: Audio CD
HOOORAY!! Finally a new TB release. After listening, I was a bit surprised...the girl has grown up, matured, but has managed to keep her signature sound. For a little on my favorite tracks, read on:

The opening track, Something Beautiful, is just that. Great vocals, great guitar, great everything. What a pleasing opener. Eyes has a very catchy melody and is a well done near-ballad. Dumbo Sun is awesome! A fun tune with fun lyrics. Shine is my second favorite on the disc. I love the inspirational lyrics and smokin' melody. Shine has the best chorus of any song.

Bottom Line: TB fans, this is a must buy. You won't be disappointed, in fact, probably very pleased with her mature sound. You can still hear some of the early Bonham influences here, but they are refined and polished. Thanks for the music, Tracy!
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Tracy Bonham's first two albums are quite good but they couldn't prepare me for how astonishing "Blink the Brightest" is. Where do I start? The following are my very favorite tracks- the title of "Something Beautiful" speaks for itself. The soaring "Eyes" is so filled with great hooks it's almost too good to be true. "Take Your Love Out on Me" has wonderfully witty lyrics along with a sweet melody and that exceptionally imaginative violin playing that is a signature of Tracy's sound. The arrangement of "Dumbo Sun" sounds like Tracy getting in touch with her inner Fiona Apple with comically nostalgic lyrics confirming that "I miss those days more than a little". I sure can relate to that one. "Shine" shimmers like the perfect soundtrack for summertime- just gorgeous! The assured "Naked" and "Wilting Flower" (with its summery refrain "Loves me anyway, loves me anyway, loves me anyway" evoking a girl plucking a daisy with her litany of "He loves me, he loves me not") are like intimate gifts. It's good to see that a bit of Tracy's angst has mellowed with maturity and is now more tempered with humor, albeit dark humor! "Blink the Brightest" ends with the sublime "Did I Sleep Through It All?" Not on this CD, she hasn't! So why isn't this woman immensely successful? Do your ears a huge favor and pick this essential Tracy Bonham album up. If you like a bit more angst and 'rawk' get her first two albums as well. Her debut album is titled "The Burdens of Being Upright" followed by "Down Here".
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Format: Audio CD
Tracy Bonham made her name in 1996 with "Mother Mother," her wry phone home after leaving the nest. The alternately acoustic and punkish rock Burdens of Being Upright was just as wry throughout, making as much of a trademark of Bonham's peculiar twists of phrase and witty titles than the unusual addition of her electric violin to the blend.

It has been ten years since "Mother Mother," and aside from a mostly-ignored second release in 2000 and a guest spot on a Blue Man Group album and subsequent tour, I was beginning to wonder if Tracy Bonham was gone for good. Had VH1 claimed another one hit wonder for its retrospective glances at the 90s?

As it turns out, not at all. On Blink the Brightest Tracy ditches the crashing rock crescendos but keeps the scathing wit, and adds some of the best hooks of her career. The result is a disc that is disarmingly pretty and predictably witty, if almost alarming mature.

Opener "Something Beautiful" is the sort of pop song that should be taught to aspiring musicians - downtempo, but still a head-nodder due to its simply beautiful arrangement. Every line of the song is a monster-sized hook, especially when Tracy trades in her "Mother Mother" scream for a gentle soprano to glide into its chorus.

On a first pass some of Bonham's lyrics lie a little flat, but often it's just because their theme isn't always immediately obvious. Especially after "Something Beautiful," a few of the early tracks seem a little artless or sparse on sense, but even a trio of listens will reveal each track has its requisite depth to be appreciated.
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