Music Is The Medicine – Anthony Gomes

The Beauty of the internet is that you can discover many, many excellent music artists / groups that you would normally find hard to find in your local store. There might be no chance of them ever coming by your neck of the woods but so what? You get to enjoy some of the best music around the world. And to hell with MTV and other channels that only play heavily hyped and marketed stuff like hip-hop and rap these days. I can’t stand to watch that stuff. But through the net I have discovered numerous artists who I now consider to be among my all-time favourites. Examples are : Big Sugar, Aaron Pritchett, Jason McCoy, Todd Kerns, Lisa Brokop, The Tragically Hip, Alexisonfire, Regina Specktor etc. The majority of these artists are Canadian – this is due to four reasons: a)Most of my online friends are Canadian, b) My fascination with Canada and Canadians in general 3) Canadian musicians are not promoted as forcefully as their American or British counterparts & foremost 4) Canadians make excellent music!

Anthony Gomes is one such artist. I have just discovered his music, quite by accident, but I am rocking out to it with loads of enjoyment & enthusiasm. To the ignorant (which included me till recently), Gomes is a Portuguese Canadian Blues-Rock guitarist / musician / singer from Toronto, Canada. He debuted his brand of music in 1997 and has released four albums in his career. He is considered among the premier guitarists in his genre and his band and he is known for their relentless touring which has garnered him a loyal fanbase. He would move to Chicago & Nashville to learn more about the roots style music & song writing that would influence his albums. The first three albums varied in their content : the first one “Blues In Technicolor” was a guitar-centric, gunslinger kinda album that showcased his chops in 1998. Then 2000 saw the mostly acoustic “Sweet Stringin’ Soul” in a more intimate setting. The next one, “Unity” came out in 2002 and was voted by some critics as one of the 30 essential blues albums of all time.

Music Is The Medicine” starts off in a funky blues-rocker style with the title track which makes you wanna tap your feet and groove. Next track Bluebird (a symbol of happiness) is great track, with a lovely chorus section. Now She’s Gone is a lament of a man whose woman who has upped & left him and has moved on. You can dance to Stand Up – a song that tells you stand up for what you believe and back it up with action. War On War is about the current situation and is a protest song from the US situation. A declaration that the protest kind of war is the only way to fight unjust war that is the propaganda of the wealthy & powerful politicians. Love Is The Answer is request to humanity to come together in peace & love and to forget their differences.

Everyday Superstar is a funky track with r&b influences standing out strong and I just love the section in which the band does the “tadananano” part. A rockier Testify is an excuse for you to party. Waiting For A Sign is a personal look inside oneself, analysing the life you have lived. The funk is back with What If which has a groovy guitar intro that uses the wah-wah pedal effects to good but understated use. Run is a rocker with blistering guitar work, a song about bravely facing your obstacles. Album closer When The Right Woman Does You Wrong is all bar blues. You can taste the tequila shots or the whiskey bottles or the vodka & limes in the music & words. The song is about how the love of your life can hurt you and that the hurt is the worst kind that you can feel. The searing & lengthy uitar solo is done to great effect.

All said, this is a great album and one I would highly recommend to lovers of anything related to blues, r&b & rock. You can play it over and over again and never tire of it. I have already played it 6 times in two days; it is that addictive.

Song for the day – “Music Is The Medicine” – ANTHONY GOMES

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