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  • Jonathan Widran

ATOM STONE, Take Me To the Fire

It has to be said – if Atom Stone were alive in the 70s and 80s, writing, recording and performing the amazingly insightful, often blistering anthemic rockers that he shares on his insanely impactful solo debut Take Me To The Fire, he would be more than a budding indie sensation. He would a be Billboard Top Ten perennial, selling out arenas worldwide.


The aesthetic is in his DNA, having grown up with a dad who rocked as a lead vocalist with numerous bands in Upstate New York while running a recording studio with his uncle. When the album he released in 2010 with his band KRYR met with mixed reviews, he set his sights on a solo career, and he scores big on this long-awaited debut, produced with Dan Tracey and Nick Sturms and engineered by Grammy nominee Dave Albro.


Stone laid the groundwork for the full unleashing of his monster energy and compelling storytelling with the one two three punch of lead singles – the fiery title track, which captures the fascinating reality of a rocker taking the stage and connecting with an adoring audience; “Hate Love,” a brooding, searingly emotional tune balancing the pain of rejection with the struggle to wish your ex well; and “Battlefield,” a relatable hard rocker about trying to survive a rocky relationship that’s always cruisin’ for a fight.


Take Me To The Fire’s deeper pleasures include the opening power ballad “I Believe,” a passionate, piano driven expression of finding personal faith through falling in love with the right person; change a few lyrics, and this could be a massive CCM worship song. It’s the calm before a hard chugging storm that includes the crunch rocker “Hurt Me,” the fun and sassy (and crazy infectious) character driven drama “Uptown” and a buoyant romp about taking a ride to the danger zone by a girl who’s “Hell on Wheels.” Maybe Stone can’t time travel to the Journey-Bon Jovi heyday to get on those mainstream charts, but he’s the closest thing this generation has to a bona fide anthem rocker drawing magical inspirational fire from the good old days.  

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