Album Reviews

Robert Plant

Carry Fire

Artist:     Robert Plant

Album:     Carry Fire

Label:     Warner

Release Date:     10.13.2017

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The world is peppered with musical magpies: musicians who are ever-searching, listening for new, refreshingly interesting rhythms and tones, the next nugget of aural treasure lurking just around the corner. For some—if lucky—there might be a sudden awakening, a new discovery that torches the flame once again and pushes them into a challenging new area or zone. But when you’re Robert Plant your pickings tend to produce pearls.

With Plant’s latest offering, Carry Fire on Warner, we have an album that ricochets from area to area, never sitting lazily in any one softly-sagging musical zone. From the opening track, with its sparkling, up-beat, up-tempo shades of modern blues and Americana, through the scorching passion of the title track to others that are mesmerising at times and haul indefinably intriguing middle-eastern scales and instrumentation into the fore, this is an album that is instantly disarming and delicious. In short, this is Plant working his balls off with an evident love, interest and immersion in the changing rhythms of the world around him.

Again working with the excellent, wide-ranging and free-thinking Sensational Space Shifters, Plant is clearly in a comfortable place musically, despite the demanding nature of the music he now embraces these days. Carry Fire is a release that moves the man, the incredible voice and his music yet another huge step forward, shrugging off any backward-looking thoughts of rock ‘n’roll superbands and Zeppelin-esque surety or security. A truly remarkable release from a modern music giant.

—Iain Patience

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