Peter Gallway and The Real BandReach For It



Talent, groove, craft, fully evolved songwriting, thoughtful lyrics and a real band. Sounds perfect ‘cause it pretty much is. Smooth arrangements and attention to vocal harmonies on songs like “One Good Friend” and “Maggie’s Lives” will remind you of Steely Dan’s work, but where Becker and Fagen are often emotionally inscrutable, Gallway’s laid back vocals  and lyrics are warm and personal. In a video promo for Reach For It, Peter paradoxically and accurately describes the sound as full and spare. “This collection is about dreaming, about connection, about people, about reaching for your dreams and it’s about saying thank you.” Percussionist Andrea Re’s vocals are so strongly reminiscent of Steely Dan’s harmony singers that I had to check her discography to see if she actually recorded with them. Mark Wainer’s accomplished guitar work is smoothly complimentary to Peter’s, spot on for the mood and melody. The lyrics are full of details, compactly revealing multiple observations, “I wore that football jersey,/ With the number twenty-two./ You told me it looked so stupid/ But I was kinda cool.” “Motown” visits a favorite theme of youthful musical discovery, in this case “dreamin’ of steps and spins….” In fact, this is a constant in Gallway’s work; he frequently discovers a small memorable, joyful moment, sometimes an expression of something he didn’t have the words for when he was younger. “True” seems to be about a high school love in terms both cools and innocent. “What if you grow taller than me?” Delicious lines, as in “Cut Like A Diamond,” “You look like the cover of Italian Vogue,” or primal ones like “Uh uh, hey hey, no no, I don’t think so” in “No Dice Eddie” share the quality of being perfect for the moment and melody. If you have been looking for some full grown, sophisticated, honestly rocking music, reach for this! —Michael Devlin

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