A Blue Flame’s amazing new album “When Your Whole World Turns To Dust“ opens in a spacious New York brownstone apartment set for a party. In the corner next to a Frank Lloyd Wright fireplace Burt Bacharach sits comfortably at a pristine bone white grand piano. The high chandelier reflects its brilliant light on the gloss finish. He plays lost in the melody and dreams of soft accompanying trumpets. Early arriving guests mingle around carefully arranged canape trays placed on long mahogany tables under tall windows. Outside the bright immerging stars over Manhattan rooftops shine their promise of magnificent potential.
As the room begins to fill the tempo picks up. Conversations loosen over second and third drinks and strangers casually flirt as they lean against the bar set up on the marble topped counter in the kitchen. Inhibitions dull over the elegant cut angles of martini glasses. A young fresh faced couple on a velvet couch sit close together talking. The woman leans in and whispers about the man in the corner who is loudly expressing his knowledge of Dorothy Parker and Elvis Costello.
“Parker would eat him alive,” she says.
“A young Elvis would punch him,” her boyfriend whispers back, “and then write a brilliant song about it.”
She smiles and gently puts her hand on his knee, “Get me another vodka tonic and maybe I’ll do the honours. The possibilities are endless. I think I just saw Harry Nilsson go into the bathroom with a woman in a catsuit. She looked just like Emma Peel.”
Later in the evening outside the French doors on the balcony, the couple watch Joe Jackson smoke cigarettes with Serge Gainsbourg. Serge laments the death of elegance and recounts the softness of Bardot’s lips. Joe (not listening) interrupts him, “Whose party is this anyway? They got a pool table in this dump?” He flicks his cigarette over the balcony onto 5th Avenue traffic far below and leaves Serge in his dreams of a forgotten Paris. A glass breaks in the living room and a cheer erupts in the crowded room. “Now things are heating up,” he says and grins at the couple.
The young couple follow Jackson inside and find a clear spot in front of the fireplace. They pass a bottle of wine back and forth with a large red faced man who periodically raises his head to scream, “Gore Vidal’s a hack” at the ceiling and then threatens to take off his shirt.
The young woman laughs, “Do it. I dare you!” The large man takes a long pull from the bottle of wine and spatters red drops down his chest and across the white terrazzo floor. He teeters back into an end table that tilts just enough to spill several drinks. The woman grabs the bottle back as the man veers backwards into the crowd unbuttoning his wine stained shirt with fat nicotine stained fingers. Her eyes brighten and she points towards the front door and says to her boyfriend, “Look who it is! This is going to get interesting.”
Liam Gallagher stumbles into the foyer. Nose crusted in fine white powder he pushes through the crowd to lunge at Paul Weller who’s busy hammering out a version of “Town Called Malice” on the now gin soaked grand piano. Gallagher trips over a Moroccan rug and hits his head on the piano bench while Weller doesn’t miss a beat.
“I don’t think he’s getting up.” The boyfriend says and tips up the wine bottle for the last swallow. “He’s gonna feel that tomorrow. Should someone call an ambulance?”
“Nah,” his girlfriend says, “he just needs a little lie down.”
Weller rings the final chord and stands to take a modest bow. He steps over Gallagher’s crumpled form and asks if anyone has seen his coat.
“I think that’s our cue.” The young woman puts her arms around her boyfriend’s neck as he leans down to kiss her. “Are you escorting me home?” She asks.
“Anywhere you want to go,” he replies.
“I think you should take me home.” She kisses him again and feels the wine flush warmth into her cheeks, “Let’s walk. The moon is over the park.”
She takes his hand and leads him through the thinning crowd. Past the girl in the corner crying into her friend’s shoulder. Past the paramedics elbowing their way down the hallway. Past the androgynous couple half undressed in the bathroom doorway. Past the wrinkled fallen coats on the floor beneath the overburdened coat rack. And into the future of the cool Autumn night.
(I fucking love this beautiful album)
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Bruce Wilson was born in the American south and after innumerable global relocations he now resides in Vancouver, British Columbia. Bruce grew up listening to his parents’ copy of The Velvet Underground’s White Light/White Heat and quickly moved on to The Stooges, David Bowie, and The Dead Boys. These days he is a writer and sings for the Vancouver based band “Sunday Morning” who released their epymonious debut album in early 2017. He’d like to have a dog but his apartment is too small.