All-star musician and songwriter Phil Cook is back with his second solo album People Are My Drug. As a follow-up to his debut album Southland Mission, Cook reaches new levels on this record that blends together all of his early gospel and blues influences with his already flourished rock and roll style. This shredding master on guitar and keyboard wiz has brought a lot of heart and soul into this record and the result is an absolute five star masterpiece.
The opening track Steam Powered Blues sets the perfect mood for the rest of the album. The building, relaxed jam in the beginning of the song truly makes the powerful, upbeat and energized ending. Song two, Tide Of Life, begins with a hypnotizing, anticipating groove that keeps the mellow vibe strong. A slight tempo increase towards the middle of the song creates the change that sparks more rock and roll spirit into the song.
Miles Away features Sylvan Esso’s Amelia Meath on gorgeous, outstanding back-up vocals. A memorable moment on this track is the call and answer vocal structure at the end, which beautifully blends both of their vocal ranges and tones together.
Song four, Another Mother’s Son, is one of the big highlights on this album with its memorable melody and powerful energetic rhythm and soul. The guitar melody in the beginning foreshadows the vocal melody which makes the song that much more enticing. He Gives Us All His Love winds down the energy a bit with slow grooving guitar melodies and a hypnotizing drumbeat. The next song, Now That I Know, continues the mellow vibe momentum but also awakens the energy of the listener with raging guitar solos.
Tupelo Honey is another highlight and surely a top song throughout Phil Cook’s entire repertoire. Immediately from the beginning, listeners are thrown into an acoustic, meditative paradise and find themselves in a relaxed, joyful state. Phil Cook contains the powerful songwriting skill of switching up the vibes and style on each track that gives all of his fans an emotional, riveting ride through his music.
Deeper Kind is the perfect deep track on this record. At track eight, listeners have experienced both the mellow, and upbeat energized meter that strikes throughout the entire album. The continuous rocking positive energy on this song keeps the momentum grooving with no end.
To conclude the album, Phil presents Life, a relaxed, medium tempo jam. In the middle of the song, powerful piano chords take over the song structure and build the energy for a strong finish of a masterpiece album. With People Are My Drug, Phil Cook displays his fine skills as a multi-talented musician with a strong grasp on all of the styles that makes music a party and celebration.
Scott J. Herman