After greatly increasing their visibility with Skin Tight, the Ohio Players became even more visible with Fire -- an unpredictable masterpiece that boasted such explosive horn-driven funk jewels as "Smoke" and the wildly addictive title song. The Players were always best known for their hard-edged funk, but in fact, there was much more to their legacy. "I Want to Be Free," the almost innocent "Together," and the remorseful "It's All Over" demonstrate that their ballads and slower material could be first-rate soul treasures. The influence of gospel imagery and the black church experience had asserted itself on Skin Tight's "Is Anybody Gonna Be Saved," and does so once again on the intense "What the Hell" and the hit "Runnin' From the Devil." Without question, Fire was one of the Ohio Players' greatest triumphs -- both commercially and artistically.
AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson