Hertfordshire newcomers The Best Medicine have honed a powerful but engaging fusion of blues-fuelled rock and metal in a sound they describe as “bluesy, ballsy and boozy.”
And the quintet of James Anson (vocals), Ryan Moore and Will Horsman (guitars), Craig Anderson (bass) and Nick Plews (drums) tell us it all started after a very boozy-sounding session at Bloodstock festival a few years ago.
As James explains: “It all started back at Bloodstock 2018. After ‘a few’ drinks we got to chatting about the sort of bands that had influenced us growing up. After ‘a few more’ drinks we decided to start a band. We were all friends to begin with as, where we’re from in North Herts, there is a very tightknit music scene. It all seemed to come together very organically. The rest is history.”
The Best Medicine’s sound has been honed on what James describes as: “Essentially anything with a strong groove that doesn’t pull any punches. We like to get straight to the point.” As a result, the band’s biggest influences include the likes of Down, Corrosion of Conformity, Alice in Chains, Clutch, Crowbar, Pantera, Mastodon, ZZ Top, Motley Crue and Orange Goblin.
And that comes together to create a fun, bluesy concoction, on which James tells us: “We all grew up on rock and metal and we were always drawn to that southern bluesy sound. The Best Medicine is all about channelling that sound into no-nonsense rock songs that are heavy enough to please even the most hardened metalhead. We like to think that we offer something for everyone.
“We take inspiration from having fun and partying, from everyday life, relationships, current events and what is going on around us in the wider world. It is important to us that what we’re writing is as organic and truthful as possible, which is why we try not to overthink things. If it feels right, then it is right. For the most part, we just want to play catchy tunes that make people want to have a good time.”
Our first taste of the band’s engaging sound was first single Lightweight, which opens up with a little riff and spoken vocals. Driving drums kick in under a darting riff under powerful, engaging vocals and feed into a big shoutalong chorus. A second chorus drops into a really cool lick over more typically gruff vocals that feed into another chorus. And the track closes out with an awesome guitar solo that drops into a big shouty outro. Check it out in the lyric video below:
And that gave us a great taster for what’s to come on their debut EP Miracle Cure, which is out this Friday and of which the band kindly gave us a sneak peek. It opens up in style with opening track Leap of Faith, which begins with lively guitars and drums supporting James’ engaging vocals. A catchy chorus drops into a funky riff that unleashes into another full-blooded verse, before another chorus gives way to a fun little solo. Check it out in the brand new video here:
That’s followed by Madame Damnable, which opens up with a delicious riff then booming drums support James’ opening vocals. That feeds into an engaging chorus of “Don’t deny her, She’ll set the world on fire, So hard to please, She’ll have you down on your knees.”
Things change up a little as Outlaws (Living Free), which may be our favourite track at first listen, jumps straight into a delicious screeching solo then a chunky bassline supports James’ crooning opening vocals. Guitars join in as it builds towards a big chorus, which gives way to a reprieve of the opening guitars. The big screeching guitars return throughout and take over towards the end with a superb concluding solo that feeds into an even more passionate chorus. What an awesome track!
Next is Reap The Whirlwind, featuring Franco Necro of fellow UK band Ritual, which opens up with dramatic drawn-out guitars and drums that continue under spoken vocals. Big stabbing guitars support powerful vocals before dropping into heavy guitars alongside dramatic vocals. And the EP concludes with title track Miracle Cure, which brings it to a fittingly energetic ending.
On the pending release of the EP, James told us: “We’re ecstatic. It’s been a long time coming. We started recording two lockdowns ago and it was a real challenge. But it’s so worth it. People will certainly notice the huge step up from a production standpoint.
“Our producer Andy J. Davies (Damage Recordings) did an incredible job, getting the best performances out of all of us, and really helping us to hone our sound. It is the best reflection of where we’re at right now. Expect big meaty riffs, a LOT of groove, soaring melodies and shout-along choruses!”
The band’s story has really come full circle as, having decided to form a band at Bloodstock, they’ll also be playing this year’s Bloodstock next month. On that, James told us: “Nick and I have played Bloodstock a couple of times in our previous band AGHAST! They were looking for acts for this year’s extended bill on the Thursday. Simon Hall heard some of the pre-production demos that we completed for the EP. He thought that our good-time party vibe would be the perfect fit to help kick off the festival. We are incredibly grateful for the opportunity, and we can’t wait to show people what we’re all about!”
The Best Medicine’s debut EP Miracle Cure is out this Friday (23 July). You can also catch them playing at Bloodstock on 12 August and the band is all set to take the EP on the road across the UK for the rest of the year.
In conclusion, James adds: “We know how to have a good time and we hope everyone will come and check us out on the Thursday at Bloodstock. It’s going to be the party to end all parties and we’re so excited to be part of it. Our music is best served loud, so when the EP drops, turn it all the way up!”