*** ALL CD SALES $ DONATED TO THE RED CROSS HURRICANE RELIEF -- THANK YOU! *** This muso has seen Story of Blue (formerly known as Blue) live a couple times and every time I think to myself, do these guys know that they're destined to be rockstars? With every show they captivate the audience with beautiful melody and bleeding heart sincerity. What strikes me most is how unassuming they are and how eventually, in the end, it is the simple song that captures the hearts of the masses. The band has a fresh mixture of bright acoustic guitars and rich keyboards, a combination rare to the San Diego Local Music Scene. The creative drumming together with solid bass lines lay a perfect foundation for a swooning Eddie Vedder meets Dave Matthews vocal. Speaking of which, Story of Blue frontman, Ben Johnston's voice reminds me of a warm, glowing fire in a small snowed in cabin high up in the Sierra mountains. He greets you with a pledge on their latest CD, Stay Gold, and in that lies a reassurance that this project is void of any pretentions or fake self adulation. His songs speak of comfort in dependence on others (If I lose my faith will you say a prayer for me/If I lose my mind will you think a clear thought for me), a determination to walk closer to his Maker (You remind me that my life is a precious gift/You make me see things clearly/I see it shine through a light Divine, so innocent) and the inner turmoil that comes from too much introspection (There's too many voices in my head). Listen for the drumming on Acceptance (intro), the wonderful melodic bass line in the dying moments of Salvation (2:20 onwards) and the piano arpeggios during Voices. I think the lyrical gem can be found on the album's title track Stay Gold: We were put on this world/for reasons we never know/We all have a purpose/And mine is to Stay Gold. You guys will stay gold, because you rock. -Etienne deBruine, Musolist.com.