Rob Thomas has been releasing great alternative rock albums since the mid to late 90s with his band Matchbox Twenty.
Now that Matchbox Twenty is taking some well deserved time off from one another to explore their side projects, Rob Thomas delivers his own project on the Melisma/Atlantic label (which also happens to be the home to Matchbox Twenty), “Something to Be.”
In all honesty, I have been a fan of Matchbox Twenty, specifically Rob Thomas’s writing, forever. So when I heard that he was releasing his solo album, I was excited. Often times when artists break away from their bands, you can hear what they did to contribute to the band through their own songs.
“Something to Be” starts out with a drum driven beat that sets the stage for an up-tempo song with raging guitars and electrifying lyrics on the first two songs, “This Is How A Heart Breaks,” and the first single, “Lonely No More.”
“Lonely No More” is a love ballad, with his heart on his sleeve while singing “I don’t wanna be lonely no more/but you know I could never stand for this/so when you tell me that you love me know for sure/I don’t wanna be lonely any more.”
Thomas sings about a relationship that could be more.
On other songs, such as “Ever the Same,” Thomas sings about loving someone and depending on one another, “just let me hold you while you’re falling apart/just let me hold you so we both fall down/fall on me/tell me everything you want me to be/forever with you forever in me/ever the same.”
He sings about a relationship of two people depending on one another to survive.
The title track of this album “Something to Be,” he sings, “I’ve been looking for something/something I’ve never seen/we’re all looking for something/something to be.” He sings about things that we have to do to be able to be something. It’s also about the people who build us up and have us believe what they say, instead of listening to ourselves.
My favorite song on “Something to Be,” which shows Rob Thomas at his finest, is “Now Comes the Night.” It is a simple piano ballad, with just him singing and playing piano. “Now Comes the Night” is about death and what remains of your soul in the end. “Now comes the night/feel it fading away/and the soul underneath/is all that remains/so just slide over here/leave your fear in the fray/let us hold to each other/till the end of our days.” He questions life in the end and what happens when we die. “Thomas ends the song by repeating the first verse which is “When the house is upon us/and our beauty surely gone/ no you will not be forgotten/no you will not be alone.”
“Something to Be,” is also filled with great musicians and great talent from start to finish. A few of the musicians that are on it are Jeff Trott (Sheryl Crow’s band), Kyle Cook (Matchbox Twenty), Cassidy, and John Mayer.
If you’re looking for great music by someone who has already built up his reputation as a great writer, go and buy this album. This will not disappoint you because “Something to be” shows great writing at some of it’s finest.