When one refers to “the south” they are generally referring to the southern portion of the United States, which is that part below the Mason Dixon line and running roughly from Texas to Florida and up the coast to West Virginia. Musically the south is known for its country leanings but also for its twangy folk and Americana and in certain areas more than others the blues, soul and gospel. There is also southern rock and the band that comes most easily to mind and seems most accessible is Credence Clearwater Revival. But in musical history one could also argue a period of the Stones and of course most of Clapton has some southern influences to them even though they began far from the south.
Anyways it seems just as natural that a band like Brisbane, Queensland, Australia’s Good Will Remedy should be influenced by southern music. And why not as geographically they are far more southern than the American south from which their music takes its leanings. Their self-titled debut Good Will Remedy launches fast and furiously out of the gate with high-styled alt country rocker “Starts with a Crack.”
They keep it rolling with the radio friendly country-pop stomp rocker “To the Light.” Then they take it a little slower but none less effective on the balladry of “Better Kind of Love” on which they get to the softer side of things with nice vocal harmonies. Next they turn to the fun side of happy go lucky and head bobbingly bouncy “Dance the Night Away.”
They explore a bit of reggae and funk on the uppity “Back 9 Charlie,” and take a turn digging in their heels to the healing powers of sweet gospel and soul on the emotionally powerful “Fish out of Water.” Later they return to the reggae and psychedelic funkiness on “To My Rescue.” They close Good Will Remedy out with a bang on the minute and half spastic jam session “Too Right.”
Had I not been previously made privy to their Australian origins I would have thought Good Will Remedy was a band born straight out of the American southern music scene. Their eponymous debut is full of southern charms and songs that evoke a sense of place, even though that place may not be their home. That alone is a testament to their love of music and to the study of their craft.
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