Greg Reed has had an interesting path that led him to his latest solo effort entitled Spruce Goose. Reed’s musical endeavors started at the age of ten when he started studying violin. As the years progressed he joined choirs as well as orchestras but it wasn't until college that he began to have an interest in creating his own music.
After college he moved to Chicago where he started a band called Certain Company that gigged regularly around the city. Five years later he moved to South Korea where he continued to play with bands such as The Hunger Tree while also working on solo material and teaching kindergarten. During his last month in Korea he recorded Spruce Goose and eventually made his way to Bellingham, WA where his still makes music and teaches.
Spruce Goose is a five-song EP that combines various genres like folk, rock, and pop to create a solid album. The songs are well written and the music is varied, as the instrumentation is rich, bursting with orchestral instruments like violin, acoustic guitar, drums and bass. Reed sings with a childlike innocence that is often confronted with triumphant vocal passages that brim with confidence.
The first song on the EP “Leaving Chicago” is obviously about his trip to South Korea. It is a song about revival, appreciating the past and looking forward to the future as he sings “That’s right, I’m leavin the thought of leaving behind / I’m past past-due on time, and time’s a-wastin.” The song bursts with cathartic energy that is grounded in progressive folk music and has elements of rock. ”Reborn” is a solid song with the catchiest lead guitar on the album while “Made Criminal” didn't leave as much of an impression on me.
The EP ends with “Faith of the Sun,” which was the highlight of the album. His violin work as well as his bass work is quite impressive in this one. I appreciated the Simon and Garfunkel vibe throughout the song.
Reed is a talented musician. Spruce Goose isn’t a perfect set of songs but there are some inventive moments on this EP you will not want to miss.
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