Yeah, over the holidays I got a glimpse. A listen to Eric Gales's new album, Middle Of The Road, soon to be released on Mascot Records. Enough to tell you this. For Eric Gales and his audience, this one is a game changer.
Eric Gales breaks it down on this album like he never has, and we have a record that evokes the memories of not just guitar heroes, but of popular music's highest points. Ray Charles. Little Richard. Miles Davis. Stevie Wonder. John Lennon.
What? John Lennon? How's that?
Well, this record is raw. Four on the floor, wall to wall, and straight to the heart. Much like Lennon's Plastic Ono Band album that laid the musician's life out in as plain a language as anyone could imagine, this album tells the truth. Fabrizio Grossi's production is brilliant - sparse and directly in your face, delivering Gale's message, which might be the most important thing about this project. This is about how we live our lives, and what we have to share with one another. A thing called love. And it's wrapped in melody, harmony, and grace.
The guitars are there, and they are more gorgeous than they have ever been - when you hear "Help Me Let Go", it's worthy of Lennon and McCartney's most tender moments in terms of a writer writing out his life for public display, but the guitars are majestic. An album, and a song of looking inwards and serving outwards. Gales seems to be singing not just for himself and his family, but for us all.
I have to stop there. A much longer review will surely be coming closer to the release date, but I felt like I had to preface it with this - I've been smiling at everything Eric has been doing for the last few years, but it's important to say that things are going up a few notches, and whether you were ever drawn to Gales for his almost unequalled guitar skills, his songs, or his ever improving vocals, well, let's just say, the best is here to come.