Patrick Flynn, Fire Up River

by Constance Tucker

I have reviewed many recordings by Patrick Flynn, from Silveroot to Flynn’s own leader releases. What amazes me each time is his ability to be a musical chameleon. Whether Bluegrass, Blues, Rock, Americana or AC, Flynn is always inventive and always reminiscent of time gone by.

Fire up River is Flynn’s most eclectic offering to date. As far as categorizing the CD, I don’t think it is possible. An eclectic mix of a little bit of everything, almost a sampler if you will, a sampler of Flynn’s many musical sides, but with one theme running through each song; brotherhood.

Ringing the theme of togetherness is the first cut “Work Together.” Flynn’s gritty vocals lay on top of a bed grooving musicians that take you straight back to the days when the Doobie Brothers ruled the land.

“Anthem for America” is befitting, especially in this election year. Get a move on America – Yeah – thank you Patrick for saying it straight.

“Double Message” has a spooky feel musically and a lyric that talks about the age old dilemma of relationships; “change.” Flynn is a master at turning a phrase; he can take any storyline or social issue and make it musical.

“Tell Me What Matters” offers a softer side of the coin, with an acoustic sound mixed in with a bit of Fold edge. Flynn again lets the listener hear his philosophical side and ability to lyrically create magic.

With all the incarnations and musical sides to Flynn we have seen a Blues Rocker, and Bluegrass King and now a 70’s style storyteller. No matter the hat he is wearing, two signature traits come through loud and clear. Flynn is a creative songsmith and offers the listener a chance to hear heartfelt vocals with a true masculine delivery. He’s not a over-produced pop star with filler lyric and flash to offer. Flynn’s songs are honest, heartfelt and just plain make you think – which is a trait many albums don’t offer in today’s times.

Fire up River is very hard to classify as one particular genre, which further demonstrates the “don’t’ box” Flynn in concept. Just pick up a copy and enjoy the true essence of what it has to offer with no commercial preconceived notions.

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