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“Reach For The Sky” by Frankly Allen

Owning up to causing pain and keeping things positive seem to be the main theme in the five songs in the EP Reach For The Sky from singer/songwriter Frankly Allen. Fans of the soft rock 70s era and even some of the mid 80s pop rock songs will applaud these moving tracks. Allen, a veteran of the Los Angeles music scene and industry, is as captivating as it comes. His writing style and songs yearn for so much. From the first track, “Always Be The Same” to the EP’s final title track, Allen provides a sonic journey that blends adult contemporary pop rock with spellbinding piano beds.

URL: https://franklyallen.com/home

One thing that does take a bit getting used to is Allen’s voice. He is modest sounding. There’s a definite sweetness in his voice, but in the first track, “Always Be The Same”, there are times when the mix feels as though his vocals are not above the music. The courage to face another day…the path we take can always be the same, he sings. Inspiring lyrics seem to be his calling card in all the songs, and it’s great to dive right into these out of the gate. Right away, too, this first track establishes the concentrated music bedrock. It’s full of color, light and drama – Allen maintains this high integrity in all the songs on the EP. 

In “I Want to Believe”, a crushing, melodic (electric) guitar breaks way for a warm, beautiful musical bed. I loved the sonic art happening in this song. It’s nearly effervescent, but grounded and organic. I believe we will find unity, sings Allen. You know my soul is fragile, he later sings. I think by this point in the EP, I got a better grasp of his sensitivity as a songwriter. You can tell, while there are only five tracks on this EP, that he’s a prolific writer just based on his song structure. He doesn’t enlist the typical rhyme each ending lyrics; his flow is a bit freer, and the way he sings the words is more of a conversational singing. In that respect, he reminds me of an intimate coffee-house singer and guitarist. 

“Wipe Away Your Tears” is my favorite track on the album. I loved the music, the sound and the way this song had me transported to a very calm and loving place. His voice breaks a few times on some of the notes, but I gave him the benefit of the doubt that it was his passion for the person and the song. It’s about a newer relationship (a year or less) and how he’s fully admitted to being in the wrong. I think he’s so sincere. It really shines through in the overall vibe of the song. 

“Remember Me” incorporates a lovely flute. The hollow sound of the harmonies is quite breathtaking. It makes you feel light and airy like a dancing butterfly. Hovering above the equally stunning acoustic guitar work, the flute and Allen’s words really make their mark. Finally, “Reach For The Sky” ends on a wonderful, contemplative note. Catch a glimpse, but then it dissipates, sings Allen. Maybe that’s the point of it all – grab things when you can or they will go away. The EP concludes on such inspiring words and awe-inducing piano playing. 

Mindy McCall



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