“Give me hope, give me strength
And take the faith when I need it most
Take my hand
I wanna feel
More than iron and steel”
With this chorus, it’s easy to hear The Gary Douglas Band’s “River Road” as a fresh yet timeless American classic – with slightly more than a nod to the Springsteen style of blue-collar, heartland rock. “River Road” embodies the everyday struggles of modern American life. From the familiar layering of piano, electric/acoustic guitars, and drums to the vocals and saxophone, Douglas and his band catches your attention and keeps you holding on until the end. Delivering a gritty vocal, Douglas captures the pain of those struggles while capturing listeners’ attention every bit as much as the instrumental parts. The pulsing bass lends itself well to the message during the chorus, pushing you along with the song. The lyrics here have a lonely, yet optimistic tinge that is only furthered by ending with the support of a choir, as if highlighting the message of hope.
The Gary Douglas Band’s “River Road” is an exceptional song: Familiar but not derivative, while using each instrument to cement the song’s accessibility and put a laser focus on its message. I can’t wait to hear more tracks from the group’s upcoming full-length “Deep In The Water” – from the sound of this single, the sky’s the limit for The Gary Douglas Band and I’m excited for people to take notice.