Back in 2009, London-based Gus Garcia unleashed his debut EP, ‘Many Hiding Places’. Although it contained a mere three songs, it was interesting and diverse enough to make one believe that he wasn’t just jumping on the bandwagon of so many 1960/1970’s-styled troubadours who came before him.
Garcia possesses a highly appealing vocal which sounds lived in and is rich in tone and emotion. He uses this to great effect on the opening ‘Clocks And Crocodiles’. Instrumentally it’s a fairly simple song but Garcia’s personality turns it from average songer/songwriter fare in to a showcase for an original artist. ‘Rhythm’ is based on a jagged but insistent riff and – appropriately enough – crisp percussion but ‘Two For One’ relies on just Garcia and acoustic guitar and the artist lives up to the spare arrangement with his warm delivery, before the song bursts in to a fuller sound for its denouement. However, the title track is possibly the standout; Garcia’s vocal is full of yearning and doubt, echoing the underlying, undulating melody. That just leaves a haunting piano lament named ‘The Sailor’.
Garcia has built on the potential of ‘Many Hiding Places’ and in turn added more strings to his bow. Already he has established a distinctive singing style and his gift for writing top tunes is there for all to see.