Walk Through Fire (Yola album)

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Walk Through Fire
Studio album by
ReleasedFebruary 22, 2019
StudioEasy Eye Studio (Nashville, Tennessee, United States)
  • Easy Eye Sound

Walk Through Fire is the debut album by Yola. It was released on February 22, 2019 on Dan Auerbach's Easy Eye Sound label, to much acclaim.[1][2][3] The album title references both a fire which damaged Yola's home and an abusive relationship from which she escaped.[4] AllMusic called the album "an extraordinary record, one designed to be part of a grand musical tradition, and it contains enough emotion and imagination to earn its place within that lineage."[5] Brittney McKenna of NPR Music's First Listen declared, "It's the work of an artist sure to stun audiences for years to come."[6] The Wall Street Journal stated, "The album is an introduction to a seasoned, major vocalist that stands to be remembered as a breakthrough."[7]

A deluxe edition of Walk Through Fire was released on December 6, 2019, which includes two previously unreleased tracks. The deluxe edition included, "I Don't Wanna Lie", which was recorded during the original sessions for the album. Also included was a cover of Elton John's "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road". Yola had performed the latter song live on a number of occasions.[8] Elton John premiered the video via his official Twitter account and has been a vocal cheerleader of Yola.[9]

Walk Through Fire was written, recorded and produced at Dan Auerbach's Easy Eye Studio in Nashville. Auerbach produced the record and assembled an all-star cast for its creation.[10] Most of the songwriting was a collaboration of Yola and Auerbach with contributions from Bobby Wood, Pat McLaughlin and Dan Penn. The team of studio musicians included bassist Dave Roe, harmonica player Charlie McCoy along with former members of the Memphis Boys drummer Gene Crisman and Wood on piano. Additional vocals were contributed by Vince Gill, Molly Tuttle, Ronnie McCoury and Stuart Duncan.[6] The album was recorded and engineered by M. Allen Parker. Auerbach and Parker also mixed the project.[11]

Critical reception and recognition[edit]

Walk Through Fire received critical acclaim from music critics. At Metacritic, the album received an average score of 85/100.[12]

Walk Through Fire generated three Grammy Award nominations. The album was nominated for Best Americana Album and the track "Faraway Look" was nominated for Best American Roots Song and Best American Roots Performance. Additionally, Yola was nominated for Best New Artist.[13] The album was listed as 48th in Rolling Stone's list of "The 50 Best of Album of 2019" and third in their "40 Best Country and Americana Albums of 2019".[14][15] Additionally, Walk Through Fire was nominated for the Album of the Year award at the Americana Music Honors & Awards and won the UK Album of the Year award at the UK Americana Awards.[16]The Tennessean also named "Walk Through Fire" to its list of "25 Essential Nashville albums of the 2010s". [17]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
Review scores

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Faraway Look" (Dan Auerbach, Pat McLaughlin, Yola) – 3:10
  2. "Shady Grove" (Bobby Wood, Auerbach, Yola) – 2:43
  3. "Ride out in the Country" (Auerbach, Joe Allen, Yola) – 3:15
  4. "It Ain't Easier" (Yola) – 4:24
  5. "Walk Through Fire" (Auerbach, Dan Penn, Yola) – 3:48
  6. "Rock Me Gently" (Auerbach, Allen, Yola) – 3:30
  7. "Love All Night (Work All Day)" (Wood, Auerbach, Yola) – 3:33
  8. "Deep Blue Dream" Auerbach, McLaughlin, Yola) – 2:13
  9. "Lonely the Night" (Auerbach, John Bettis, Yola) – 4:43
  10. "Still Gone" featuring Vince Gill (Wood, Auerbach, Roger Cook, Yola) – 3:00
  11. "Keep Me Here" (Wood, Auerbach, Yola) – 3:40
  12. "Love Is Light" (Wood, Auerbach, Yola) – 3:16
  13. "I Don't Wanna Lie" † (Wood) – 3:02
  14. "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" † (Elton John, Bernie Taupin) – 3:24

†Deluxe edition only


  1. ^ Bernstein, Jonathan (19 January 2019). "Yola's Fight for Roots-Rock Freedom". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  2. ^ John, Emma (21 February 2019). "Yola: from down and out in London to Nashville's country soul star". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  3. ^ Mazor, Barry (25 February 2019). "'Walk Through Fire' by Yola Review: Across the Great Divide". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  4. ^ "On Her Mighty Debut, Yola Pushes Through To 'Walk Through Fire'". Npr.org. Retrieved 13 May 2019.
  5. ^ "Walk Through Fire – Yola – Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  6. ^ a b "On Her Mighty Debut, Yola Pushes Through To 'Walk Through Fire'". NPR.org. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  7. ^ Mazor, Barry (February 25, 2019). "'Walk Through Fire' by Yola Review: Across the Great Divide". Wsj.com. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  8. ^ Betts, Stephen L. (December 6, 2019). "Yola Is Priceless on Cover of Elton John's 'Goodbye Yellow Brick Road'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  9. ^ John, Elton (December 6, 2019). "Nominated for four #GRAMMYs and one of Elton's favourite rising stars, @iamyola has just released a beautiful cover of 'Goodbye Yellow Brick Road'!". Twitter.com. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  10. ^ Liptak, Carena. "Story Behind the Song: Yola, 'Ride Out in the Country'". The Boot. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  11. ^ "YOLA PREMIERES VIDEO FOR 'LOVE ALL NIGHT (WORK ALL DAY)' TAKEN FROM FORTHCOMING ALBUM". Circuitsweet.co.uk. February 2, 2019. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  12. ^ a b "Walk Through Fire by Yola". Metacritic.com. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  13. ^ "2020 GRAMMY Awards: Complete Winners List". Grammy.com. November 20, 2019. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  14. ^ Jonathan Bernstein, Jon Blistein, Jon Dolan, Patrick Doyle, Brenna Ehrlich, Suzy Exposito, Jon Freeman, David Fricke, Kory Grow, Will Hermes, Christian Hoard, Charles Holmes, Joseph Hudak, Brendan Klinkenberg, Elias Leight, Angie Martoccio, Claire Shaffer, Rob Sheffield, Hank Shteamer, Brittany Spanos, Simon Vozick-Levinson (December 5, 2019). "The 50 Best Albums of 2019". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 29 January 2020.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  15. ^ Jonathan Bernstein, David Cantwell, Jon Dolan, Jon Freeman, Joseph Hudak, Brittney McKenna, Marissa R. Moss (December 9, 2019). "40 Best Country and Americana Albums of 2019". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 29 January 2020.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  16. ^ https://www.musicweek.com/talent/read/stars-honoured-at-uk-americana-awards/078757
  17. ^ Paulson, Dave; Watts, Cindy. "25 essential Nashville albums of the 2010s". The Tennessean. Retrieved 29 January 2020.