Fingertips Explores the Archives: Orenda Fink - Bloodline
Formerly one-half of the the delicate Georgia duo Azure Ray, Orenda Fink emerged on her first solo CD in 2005 with a striking new musical persona: tough, propulsive, and vibrant. "Bloodline" is a soaring, memorable shot of powerful pop, its chugging verse, with its deep, fuzzy bass line, and shimmering chorus together hinting at something both menacing and transcendent. Fink has a resilient, familiar voice, with none of the fragile breathiness of her Azure Ray partner Maria Taylor (not that there's anything wrong with fragile breathiness, mind you!). Check out how idiosyncratically she breaks the lyrical line in the chorus: the words are, "And the cold air stings my eyes/As I take his hands, he says/'Let your body do this'"; she stops on the words "stings" in the middle of the first line, and then on the "I," "his," and "hands" in the second. And yet the music has such unstoppable authority the odd breaks seem inevitable--and, I believe, contribute further to the tension between threat and release that helps give the song such power. And yet, given the splintered, often contentious nature of the 21st-century rock scene, the rich, compelling "Bloodline" sank without much of a trace when it came out. Could be it rocked too hard for the Grey's Anatomy set, and yet was too accessible for the hipster crowd. No matter: here's your chance to catch up with it and put it in your own collection. It's a keeper.
- Jeremy Schlosberg