Record Street Music
Pop Rock, 2020
When most folks are staying in at home, Jeremy Renner decides to release an album to, according to him, bring people together yadda yadda. Perhaps aptly, the album is called The Medicine. With only seven songs present, it’s more accurately called an EP, I guess, but hey, whatever rocks Mr Big Nose Hawk Eye’s boat.
Unlike most actors dabbling in music, however, Mr Renner actually comes off as pretty legitimate here. The production values are solid, but more importantly, his vocals are just as solid. He wisely keeps within his range, never trying too hard to show off or go into melodramatics, and as a result, he sounds pretty good.
The thing is: the songs here aren’t particularly memorable. They sound like some generic pop rock tracks done by various generic pop rock groups in the past and future. Sure, the title track has a nice refrain, while Best Part of Me is appropriately anguished and full of dramatic pathos, and Ghosts and Roses conjures this vibe of listening to Mr Renner singing away in a smoky blues club late at night when one has drunk a bit too much and is looking for someone to shack up to for that moment.
Like its title would suggest, December Days is a torchy ballad usually performed by boy bands claiming to be punk or something. In Main Attraction, Mr Renner channels his best impersonation of Imagine Dragons-gone-AWOLnation. Never Sorry is stormy and grumpy while being catchy as hell, and Every Woman is where he celebrates the gentler sex with bizarre lyrics like “I like them flowers in your head!” and “Won’t you let me inside your head?” He also wants to get under their skin… wait, maybe this is a serial killer’s ode to his victims past and future?
All in all, The Medicine is actually easy to swallow without leaving much of a bitter aftertaste. It also won’t stick to my mind much, but at least the whole thing is listenable while it lasts. Mr Renner certainly didn’t embarrass himself too much here!