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*Lisa   Loeb   Reviews(Firecracker)*
Exclusive Review from- Lisa Loeb was Miss Ubiquity 1995. Scampering across MTV lip-syncing her best-selling singles "Stay (I Missed You)" and "Do You Sleep?," she was all cat's-eye glasses and perky, in-your-face insouciance. Her sheer uncoolness personified one of those moments when pop and rock colluded to make Top 40 radio fun again, the stuff of sunny afternoons spent cruising in a car with the volume dial cranked to the right. Lisa Loeb has sobered since then, and the results are disappointing. The endearing naivete and frothy, indie-rock guitar of her debut album, Tails, have been replaced on "Firecracker" by staid arrangements and lackluster riffs. Loeb's songwriting and delivery haven't aged as much as she apparently thinks they have, either -- at least not enough to allow her to pull off a meandering mantra such as "I was restless/I was restless/I was restless/I was restless" on the cloying "Wishing Heart" (a track that, incomprehensibly, lifts the intro guitar lick of the Who's "Pinball Wizard"). Still, Loeb occasionally manages to infuse life into her tenuous song structures: With its dense harmonies and sledgehammer hooks, the opening track, "I Do," has the makings of a decent AM-radio sing-along. And the plaint in "Falling in Love" -- "The time between meeting and finally leaving is sometimes called falling in love" - is pure, slushy pop poesy. "Firecracker" might signify that Loeb's star is fading; it's equally likely, though, that this second album is merely the sound of a songwriter stumbling toward adulthood with a sophomore's two left feet. Loeb's chops should improve with practice; whether or not she herself is going to grow up remains to be seen.
--------In Rolling Stones Magazine(11/27/97)-
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Exclusive Review from- Lisa Loeb returns with her second major-label album fresh off a notable stint on this year's Lilith Fair festival. Firecracker is not a nervous-jitters sophomore slump, but a confident album by an artist settling in for the long haul. Repeated listens bear this out: Over time, different songs will stand out; one night it'll be "Falling In Love" that catches your ear, another day it will be "How" or "This." Through it all, the real strength of these songs lies in that patented, winning Loeb formula that made "Stay" such a phenomenal success - a common, but clever, word phrase, a catchy melodic hook that hangs on Loeb's high, clear voice, ringing guitars and layers of supple background vocals. But with Firecracker, Lisa Loeb has proven herself more than just a clever lyricist and catchy songstress she's building a body of work that will stand up over time. Other hits waiting in the wings: "Truthfully," "Jake" and "Split Second." ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Exclusive Review from-It's been two years since Lisa Loeb sprung her debut, Tails on the music world, and it seems she's spent that time grappling with the heavy emotional issues explored on Firecracker. This time, Lisa is without the backing of the band, Nine Stories, and her personality, along with her trademark thick-framed, cat-eye glasses, has stepped front and center. The first track, (and first single release) "I Do," gets the album off to a familiar start with Lisa telling a lover that she has had enough abuse and doubt and she won't take it anymore. Then she slows down and opens up on songs like "Truthfully" and "Wishing Heart."

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