Creosote - Area Man album review

SoccerMom Records

By Jamie Bertolini

The bandmates of Jason Plumb and The Willing are going solo. Bassist, Gord Smith aka Creosote is getting set to release his first rock album, Area Man. This separate endeavour that each band member is taking part in will hopefully showcase to their fans each of their own unique musical talents.

Area Man consists of nine tracks that can in the simplest way, be classified as pure and easy rock. Smith’s songs aren’t necessarily slow paced, but definitely give off a more relaxed and zen vibe at times.

Smith’s album is heavy with vocals in many of his songs. The vocal tracks seem to hold all the major melodies leaving background and supplemental music to the instruments. This gives the album a sort of theme to work from, creating a very smooth listening flow throughout the CD.

Keeping with the same topic of vocals, Smith’s sixth track “Thousand Watt Smile” has some of the sweetest lyrics heard on his album. The melody he makes with his voice combined with the story he tells is sure to draw in and hook any listener.

Towards the end of the album is a noticeable tempo increase to the final songs. Instruments are played quicker and Smith’s smooth vocals get a little grainier in songs like “Another John” and “Tearing,” showing off just a little more of his musical diversity.

Smith also includes his own take of Rush song, “Mystic Rhythms.” According to SoccerMom Records, the artist was a “huge Rush fan early on,” so it makes sense for him wanting to acknowledge them in his own album. If you’ve heard the original, you’ll notice the very mellow and mystical sounds created mostly by synthesizers.  In Smith’s version, he sticks to playing up the guitar and creating his own rock-band style to it so that it goes well with the rest of his album.

Area Man will be released along with four other albums belonging to Smith’s band-mates, on March 27.