Rick Fines & Suzie Vinnick Nothing Halfway

What happens when you take two talented people that have been friends for years and throw them together on an overdue release that celebrates their friendship? Nothing halfway (aptly titled). Sure it’s a mixed bag of blues and soul — a potpourri of the musical styles both artists have used to create names for themselves. Like many vanity projects, this pair plays the music that makes them feel good, rather than follow any prescription for success or nail any specific audience sect. Some of the musical back-up is thin in places — with spontaneity possibly ruling the day over production finesse. But what is undeniable is the chemistry between these two closely connected musical cohorts — evidenced by the energy that lifts off the page and warms your heart. This is Saturday afternoon music that makes you feel good. Each volunteers quality, self-penned songs that stand-out: notably Vinnick’s "Love In A Bottle,” which grants her perfect voice licence to soar; Fines’ "Fool In Love,” which marries his distinctive blues rasp to his lethal slide guitar. And there’s no denying the Marvin & Tammi (Roy & Dale?) rush that floods over you with their co-penned opening track, "We Got A Love Like That.” A great first effort that was 15 years in the making, with so much potential for more. (Independent)