Written by Lauren Rosier
Musician and writer, Patrick Ames, returns with his type of blues on The Virtualistics, out now. The Napa Valley artist wrote a total of 8 tracks for the LP that was written over the course of the pandemic. The album’s title was inspired by the nature of the recording style. While Ames writes the music and lyrics, much of his time collaborating with producer Jon Ireson and backup singers Chana Matthews and Mikaela Matthews, have been mostly virtually.
Ames opens the record up with an upbeat, funky track, “Help People Up,” a soul/R&B track focused on love and positivity. It begins with some 8os era-style drums and breaks into some early 90s R&B/soul music. Between the musical arrangements and vocal arrangements, the track is meant to give the listener a positive message.
I really enjoy the mysterious, almost eerie vibe to the second track, “Second Wave.” It almost has this 80s vibe, as Ames sings about the Coronavirus, rumors, and lies. The vibe of the song fits well with the track’s subject matter, as he sings about “lies and rumors, spread the virus, lies, and rumors, the second wave”
“Rubber and Glue” is an adorable track from Ames as he sings “I’m stuck on you.” It’s a fun love, alternative love song. This is actually a live version of the song.
On the track “Great Bunch of Molecules,” Ames slows things down a bit and sings about each of our molecular beings.
The track, “Essential Worker,” opens with beautiful choral singers and then breaks into a guitar riff. This is clearly a song about the pandemic and the individuals that have been on the frontlines of the pandemic; the “health workers” Ames sings about that “work inside the quarantines” who have “sores from masks they’ve worn” and whose “bodies need sanitizing.”
The last track on the record, “Reawakened 2020,” is another political track about the “force of good” being “reawakened” in the world. Ames has a way of creating a cohesive track and lyrics about some political situations. Overall, this record has some great tracks on and he has created another work of great songs.
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