I recently went to an album release show for Gary Clark Jr.’s “This Land” at Amoeba in L.A. and, ever since, I’ve been trying to get everyone I know to give it a listen.
Gary Clark Jr. is no stranger to the libraries of those into Rock and Blues, so the greatness of his most recent album is definitely not missed on any of his fans. To the rest of you who are not normally keen on this genre: this album is an absolute must-listen. I know the idea of Rock or Blues is a huge turn off to most people who are usually only into Hip-Hop, R&B, EDM, etc. This guy, though, is a genius whose style goes far beyond his genre and this project has something for anyone willing to take a step outside of their usual. Sure, the basis of his music is in-your-face, shreddy, bluesy guitar- I won’t lie to you on that. But, that shouldn’t scare you away from it.
What makes this piece an essential 2019 album, is how he crosses over like no one I’ve ever seen before. Being a huge fan of bands like The Internet and 21 Pilots, who shatter what it means to be labeled by musical genre, I can’t stop listening to this album. You want something filthy and angry or even up-tempo to workout to? Listen to “This Land”, “What About Us”, “Low Down Rolling Stone”, and “Gotta Get Into Something”. If you’re more into the idea of a chiller or bluesier vibe, give “I Got My Eyes on You”, “The Guitar Man” and “Feed the Babies” a try. I guarantee a few babies are going to be made to “Pearl Cadillac,” and “I Walk Alone” is an otherwise best-selling R&B single sandwiched between heavy riffs and a shreddy solo. He’s even put out a little Rock-Reggae-hybrid-ting with one of my personal favorites “Feelin’ Like a Million”. There’s all of that plus many more on this killer 17-song album that many have told me they’ve been sold on since I forced it onto them.
Though an album like this is admittedly not normally something you’ll find here on Nothin But Hits, it belongs here since this collective is, and will always be, about quality finds over everything- especially considerations of molds or genres. I acknowledged before that a new flavor of music can be tough to get into. I get that. My point is that it’s 2019 and life’s too short to stay in the same lane you’ve always been in. If you’re going to wear jean jackets and distressed jeans because they’re back in, then you should at least try to listen to one of the better rock albums the last few years has had to offer: “This Land” by Gary Clark Jr.