As a long time fan of both Tomás Doncker and True Groove Records, I was excited to hear that the release of Tomás Doncker’s socially conscious album entitled The Mess We Made was received so well that it has been followed up by multiple live videos of this stellar creative force. Doncker has always been a thinking man’s artist -- the type of soulful personality that truly tries to shine a light on some dark subjects in the hope that we can all learn from some of these, almost inhuman, mistakes. Not one to hold his tongue, Tomás Doncker will no doubt find himself riding the controversial wave throughout his already impressive career.
The title video "The Mess We Made" is flawless and incredibly spirited. Doncker showcases his smooth and smoky vocals along with his deep lyrical content in such a way that he instantly rises to the level of the blues and funk greats. It wouldn’t be a complete picture if I didn’t mention the entire band that helps Doncker create such an air of intrigue and emotion. Everyone in this video is on point, and it is no doubt that everyone involved in this production truly gets the message being sent out into the world.
The song entitled "Church Is Burning Down" is a bit of an artistic and musical juxtaposition; on one hand, the track is fun and makes you want to get up and dance, but then comes the realization that the lyrical content is quite heavy and demanding. Inspired by the Charleston Massacre, Doncker has some very important thoughts to share with his listeners, and, even though the message might be a bit of a hard pill to swallow, the music is always enough to help make the emotional journey easier.
"Some Ol Dolls" is a beautifully seductive track, filled with perfectly timed cymbal hits and a haunting opening vocal line. After a quiet introduction, the song becomes a funk-infused journey through the socially aware and anthem-minded Tomás Doncker. Much like the rest of the album and the rest of the live performances, this song doesn’t miss a beat or skip a step. Like any great musical journey, "Some Ol Dolls" starts out one way and ends another; from the quiet and reserved opening, the song quickly releases the intense thoughts of Mr. Doncker, and it is a beautiful thing to hear.
What True Groove Records has offered us, once again, is impressive and thought provoking. They have set the bar high for raw and honest music. It is important that we continue to support our socially conscious artists because their thoughts can create the change that is needed. It is great to hear a catchy song with no depth, but sometimes it is necessary to pair that catchy song with some deep and inspired socially aware thoughts.