by Nicholas James
Barry Gibb's first full solo album since
Voyager sees Barry exploring
numerous different styles and musical sounds
(including rock, psychedelia, country-rock
and disco), and generally succeeding.
So let's start with the basics. Barry's
voice (which, let's face it, has changed
over the years as he has aged) is superb.
There is so much wisdom and battered life
experience in that voice and it is still so
strong. In some ways, this is really
exciting to me as a listener, and I really
want to hear what an artist of this calibre
can do as it opens up so many opportunities
for Barry that as a younger artist he could
not realistically achieve (at least not
himself - but he could always give songs to
people like Kenny Rogers who had that range,
which is exactly what he did!).
In parts, the musical accompaniment is a
little too perfect and could have done with
a few flourishes. At times the musical
backing and production sounds like a demo,
like it could have done with a bit more
work. Technically faultless, I am sure, but
needing a bit of a kick.
But that is not the case with all the
tracks. A case in point is the sumptuous
Springsteen-influenced ballad 'Home Truth
Song', which has a rich, multilayered
production which makes the song a genuine
adventure for the listener. I can listen to
it again and again. I can do the same with
'In The Now' and the truly remarkable
'Meaning of the Word'.
Some critics have suggested that Barry
should have focused on one thing instead of
letting himself go. This displays something
of a misunderstanding of Barry Gibb as an
artist. He has simply never done that. It is
what makes him one of the most magnificent
artists of the modern music era. Listen to
Bee Gees albums such as 'Odessa' (1969),
'Size Isn't Everything' (1993) or 'This Is
Where I Came In' (2001) and you will see
what I mean.
So if you are reading this, Barry: don't
listen to these critics. Keep changing. Keep
moving forward. And keep delivering us
albums like 'In The Now' for many more
Why Buy In The Now?
To hear one of most eclectic collections of
songs he has produced - all good!
Buy from Amazon