Review: Dierks Bentley's "Feel That Fire"
Country star's latest burns up the chart
After three studio albums and a greatest hits collection, Bentley's star is sure to continue to rise with "Feel That Fire." The title track, about a girl who wants it all and the guy who's going to give it to her, is already top 5 on Billboard's Hot Country Songs chart.
If you need any further proof that his station in life has risen, look who Bentley's writing with on the album: heavy hitters like Rodney Crowell ("Pray") and Rivers Rutherford ("Better Believer").
"Feel That Fire" is a slick mix of country and rock that's instantly appealing because every song sounds slightly like another song you already know. There's a certain check-off-the -list quality here: Sexy, swooning, ballad ("I Wanna Make You Close Your Eyes"), Check; High-octane, "I got a girl and a pick-up-truck" raver ("Here She Comes, Here We Go"), Check; the mid-tempo ‘I'm nothing without you,' slow burner (Keith Urban-rip-off "You Hold Me Together"), Check.
But there are also moments that stand out: Bentley and Patti Griffin duet on "Beautiful World," a lovely, moving tune about finding grace and hope in a world that often offers little of either that is elevated by their performances. There's also the uptempo "Better Believer," which addresses in an original way why we only look up to God when things are looking down. "Last Call," written by Del McCoury's son Ronnie, extends into fun, flat-out, blue-grass rave up.
Many of these songs like the fast-breaking, bluegrass-tinged "Heartwrecker" and time-to-party anthem, "Sideways," will likely gain energy and momentum when played live.
Bentley has a strong solid voice, but it's impossible to listen to these songs and not wish that he'd let himself go a little. There's virtually no emotion attachment to the material in his voice (a notable exception is "Pray"). When he sings "I want to take you somewhere out there til the world fades out of sight" in "I Wanna Make You Close Your Eyes," he might as well be talking about going to Wal-Mart instead of making love. It's a shame because the songs are catchy and his voice appealing enough that with some extra oomph, this could have been an exceptional album, not just a really good one.
News From Our Partners
- What to Watch This Weekend: The Season Finales of Nikita, Doctor Who, The Simpsons, and Family Guy The Office Series Finale Review: That'll Do, Show. That'll Do. Syfy Renews Warehouse 13 for a Fifth and Final Season
- 'Anchorman 2′ Teaser: Stay Classy, Fat Face! Team Fortress 2′s Robotic Boogaloo Community Update Adds Even More Hats Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D to Launch with L.A. Zoo's Party Animals
- Cannes Film Festival: Cannes 2013, Day Three: Cheers for the young stars of The Selfish Giant, jeers for the new films by Hirokazu Kore-eda and Arnaud Desplechin Hear This: Destroy This Place shows how press releases can get it right Watch This: With Beavis And Butt-head Do America, Mike Judge skewered the idiocy of cinematic adventures
- The Future Of Olivia And Fitz, And More Season 3 Scoop SPOILER ALERT: What's Ahead In 'Nikita' Season 4? Google Glass Does Porn
- The Telefile - The Most Heinous Person on Reality TV This Week The Telefile - Modern Family: The Best Lines of the Night The Telefile - Fall TV 2013: What's On When
- Can You Guess Which Celebrity Lives in This Mansion? Macklemore + Ryan Lewis Cover Billboard, Recall the Glory Days of Drugs, Myspace + More Lady Gaga Wears Sky High Heels to Versace Party [Pic]
- How Far Will 'Star Trek Into Darkness' Boldly Go At Box Office? 'Star Trek Into Darkness': The Secret Behind The Mystery Villain 'Pacific Rim' Trailer Surfaces: Watch Now!
- Beyonce Pregnant Again? Sources Confirm 'Epic' Star Is Carrying Baby No. 2 'Hangover 3' Red Band Trailer: Take a Walk Down a NSFW Memory Lane (VIDEO) Why 'Man of Steel' Didn't Use 'Superman' in the Title
Who is in the lead?Saturday, May 18, 2013
They let their fingers do the talkingFriday, May 17, 2013
How do you auto-tune a smurf?Friday, May 17, 2013
The Twitterverse says yes, her rep says noFriday, May 17, 2013