Grammy award winning artist Gary Clark Jr. released his third studio album, titled “This Land,” on Feb. 22. Clark, a native of Austin, Texas, is no novice in the music scene, having released several successful albums and contributing to the soundtracks of many TV shows and movies. “This Land” came a week earlier than originally expected, but did not disappoint.
With the 17 tracks on “This Land,” Clark has enough room to create a variety of songs that each bring their own story and sound to create a complete album. Each song takes the listener into a different genre, with a fusion of rap, blues and rock.
“Gotta Get Into Something” feels like a revival of garage rock punk with its rapid tempo and riffs. “The Governor” takes the blues elements that Clark has sprinkled in a lot of his music and creates a traditional blues track.
Not only does Clark deliver a multitude of music styles, but his album brings up and examines a variety of themes. The album’s namesake and lead single, “This Land” talks about Clark’s struggles being black in the south, particularly in the Trump-era. In this song Clark ties together elements of rock and hip-hop to deliver a powerful musical arrangement and a compelling, thought provoking performance.
Clark lightens the tone with songs like “Feelin’ Like a Million,” a track with some reggae elements mixed with Clark’s rock sound, that blend together to tell a simpler story about relationships that matches the tone of the song.
“This Land” truly takes the listener through time, blending together snippets of many genres. Clark proves that he is a jack of all trades who is able to combine elements from various places into cohesive tracks. If they take the time to listen through the entire album, fans of any genre are guaranteed to find songs they love.