I knew I would dig Erica Blinn when I read an interview in which she mentioned that one of the films she returns to over and over is Harold And Maude, my favorite film of all time. Of course, that doesn’t really give any indication of what her music would sound like (she is nothing like Cat Stevens). Her new CD, Lovers In The Dust, is full of great, straight-forward country-rock vibes and some excellent vocals. Erica also plays a mean harmonica. All the tracks on Lovers In The Dust are originals.
The album gets off to a great start with a fun, energetic country-rock-pop gem, “Whiskey Kisses.” This is the song that really got me interested in her. Her vocals have the right amount of drive mixed with a sort of yearning. Here is a taste of the lyrics: “I can’t go another day without you/I hate to admit it, but baby I’m a mess/And I’m so sorry that I doubted you/Now I’m wondering what happens next.” I’m also keen on the work on keys by Kevin Sweeney. This is one of the CD’s best tracks, and the album also ends with a brief reprise of this tune.
“Let’s Give Love” has more bright country-rock vibes. I especially like it when she belts out the lyrics. She has a certain power, and when she lets loose, the song has almost a celebratory feel. It lifts you up, in spite of lyrics like, “When life moves fast, love don’t last/Maybe we’ll get lucky, but I don’t think that’s the case.”
“Sexy Mess” opens strongly, with a steady pounding beat and some great work on harmonica. The song then relaxes slightly when Erica’s vocals come in. It has more of a pop vibe on the verses, its rhythm and sound in the realm of a group like the Go-Go’s. I really dig the short section with bass and drums and just the repeated line, “My heart is pounding.” It’s a nice little punk moment, and it leads back to some wonderful harmonica and great energy. This is a fun track, one of my favorites.
There are some mellower vibes on “Need Somebody Tonight,” which features some sweet work on harmonica. Devon Allman plays lead guitar on this track. “And I’m just sitting on this couch waiting for the phone to ring/And I’m singing to anyone who’s listening/That I need somebody tonight.” And we can all relate to these lines at some point or another: “I turn the stereo on, makes me think of him/It plays all the songs that we used to dance to/I’m not in the mood, don’t want to hear them again.”
My favorite song on this album is “How Lucky I Am.” It begins as a softer, more acoustic tune, but still enters the pop realm, with a catchy rhythm. It’s a sweet love song, and Erica’s vocals have a beauty, even an innocence that’s not so apparent or prominent on other tracks. Here is a taste of the lyrics: “And now you’re holding my heart in your fist/And I hope you never let go/So if you see me staring at you/And it looks like I’ve lost my mind/You can bet I have/Baby, I’m your biggest fan/And I’m just thinking about how lucky I am.” This track really stands out. It’s an earnest and adorable love song, and I like it more and more each time I listen to it.
She follows it with a kick-ass, demanding, high-energy tune, “Home,” one to get you moving. This one features more nice work on harmonica. Someday I’m going to make a mix CD of songs titled “Home.” I don’t think I’ve ever heard a bad tune with that title. “I want you to come home.”
The title track, “Lovers In The Dust,” opens with lines that make me smile: “Found my name and number penned on that bathroom wall/I think it said I’m a slut, but I can’t recall/She didn’t say it to my face, ain’t got the guts/Somehow I keep forgetting that she’s better than us.” A nice intro, right? I really like the lyrics of this one. Sure, it also has a good beat, but it’s the lyrics that really drive this song. “Life is way too short/Everybody lets you know/And in the same breath they say you should take it slow.” And it also has some “Ooh la la” vocals.
CD Track List
- Whiskey Kisses
- Let’s Give Love
- Let Me Be Yours
- Sexy Mess
- Need Somebody Tonight
- Pull The Trigger
- How Lucky I Am
- Lovers In The Dust
- One Of These Days
- Whiskey Kisses (Reprise)
Lovers In The Dust is scheduled to be released on January 28, 2014 on Curry House Records.