ONE MAN SOLIDARITY
Richard Groulx and The Co-Accused
I had an opportunity to interview Richard Groulx and had answer to a series of questions before hearing One Man Solidarity. So, I was intrigued to see just what he had come up with in terms of music.
“The style of music I play is most easily described as Americana,” he said. “It's a broad term that means I borrow from any style that was born in the North American tradition (blues, rock, folk, country). I like something from all of these different styles, and you can hear on the album that one song will be specifically rock or specifically folk.”
All right, as I check through the list, I rather like all the genres he mentioned, although I have a slightly more folk-based view of what I would term Americana, folk mixed with country/bluegrass.
So I wanted to see how he mixed it all together?
Then I got to a quote that had me concerned. Groulx said, “stylistically, 'One Man Solidarity' is a mish-mash. I admit that. It was intentional. I wanted to show that I was capable of doing it all and I wanted to see what got the most positive feedback.”
Anyone who reads these reviews regularly probably knows I like a CD to hold together stylistically.
This one ventures pretty widely, along the way creating some descent material, like the title cut, missing completely with Petty Too, and frankly leaving me wondering how efficient a calling card effort this CD is as a debut.
The problem is simple, I can't recommend it for fans of folk, since it is at best only folk-influenced. It's not blues, although there are blues riffs wrapped into a couple of cuts. Mandolin gives a country feel in another sport or two along the way.
The Real Me is more a rock song, as is Final Goodbye, albeit a love song version off rock.
This is a CD that would be a radio programmer's nightmare, since knowing where to fit it in is determined song by song. That generally doesn't work.
As a listener, I tend to listen to CDs based on what genre best fits my mood. This one would be hard to pull out since Groulx changes pace a bit too much.
Musically, I like what Groulx and The Co-Accused do.
Vocally, Groulx still needs some polish at times, but it is a debut too.
Check it out at www.myspace.com/richardgroulx
-- CALVIN DANIELS
-- Review first appeared in Yorkton This Week newspaper July 29, 2009 - Yorkton, SK. Canada