Midwest Magic: A Thousand Fires

When one looks at the Midwest from the outside, the first thought is something along the lines of cow tipping and a crap load of corn. I did when I did time (err…) moved to Lincoln, Nebraska for my freshman year of high school in 2003. Looking back seven years removed since moving from the capital city, there is one amazing aspect that the state had: true magical musical talent that lies within the confines of the cornfields of the Midwest. Today we take a look at another Midwestern treat from Coury Palermo and Phillip Zach, better known as A Thousand Fires.

In early 2012, Nashville based singer-songwriter Coury Palermo and Lincoln based writer-multi-instrumentalist-producer Philip Zach had begun to send each other bits and pieces of songs to each other via email. (I’m sensing a huge trend here in cyber collaborations) “Philip and I met in 2010 while on the road and quickly became friends,” says Coury. “After about a year of running into each other in different cities, we began throwing around the idea of writing together. It came about very casually.” After several months of writing, the idea was thrown out for Coury to go visit Philip in Lincoln (now I know it wasn’t for Lazlo’s…). What that short visit would turn out would be the most exquisitely produced electronic pop EP trilogy set for release this year entitled RebelLoverLiar.

Lately, I’ve been falling in love with this concept of releasing EPs to wet the appetite of the listener over an extended period. With RebelLoverLiar, it is no different. This Monday, January 27th marks the release of the first installment entitled Rebel. When I first take a look at the track listing, I notice there are only three tracks. Though the reason is clear why they did that, 11 minutes of beautiful electronic melodies that will leave you begging for more.

The EP opens up with the lead single “Can’t Survive.” The single brings a sound that is upbeat with heavy synth-like melodies met with emotionally driven lyrics that could be interpreted as a relationship gone awry in which one lover doesn’t want to have to leave the other by themselves. For those who are obsessed with musical structure, at the bridge is the most amazing change of tempo with a beautiful orchestral build into the last half of the song. It doesn’t feel out of place and blends so seamlessly.

I’ve been following Coury’s work for a couple of years now and I will not hide the fact that I am obsessed over his vocal prowess. The closing track of Rebel entitled “When You Wake” is the most powerful ballad I have heard out of Coury’s career so far. The electronic sound met with the string section, Phillip created a beautiful canvas in order for Coury to paint on. “Take my hand, it’s gonna be alright,” the song brings on this emotional feeling that many of us can relate to. We’re always looking for that knight in shining armor to come and save the day or even just let us know that everything is going to be alright. The track itself was emotionally riveting that I found myself even tearing up while listening to it!

After having a chance to listen to Rebel, I am beyond excited for the next installment, Lover, in March. If it’s anything like this, I’m going to promise you that we will let you know about it!

The guys of A Thousand Fires have in fact proven that you don’t have to be in LA or NYC to be the next big thing. Magic lies everywhere… especially in A Thousand Fires.

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Get Rebel now on iTunes! 

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A Thousand Fires on the web:
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Serena Butler 

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