Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Josh Niles at Big Light, Nashville, Tennessee
The way that Max Gomez's "What It Means" starts is with a story of a boy with aspirations. He's a kid who buys into the thought that it's a great big world out there, but you can make it whatever you'd like to make it. The limitations are your own. This boy believes that he can grow up into a man and he can do it with his own bare hands. He can spin his own tale and the structure that it can twist itself around. He will build his own castle with ease. It won't take anything but want to make it happen. It will be his and there will be no denying it. Of course, there's much more to it than that and men are tougher to make than just with simple desire.
Gomez, a songwriter from Taos, New Mexico, finds that the tightrope is thin and there are people at both ends, grabbing onto it and shaking the living daylights out of it, only making the task of getting from one side to the other that much more difficult. He sings that he dreamed of being a man - and he might still get there, but the way he'll take is going to be more circuitous than he ever believed it was going to be when he was a wee little guy, thinking that being a man was all that it was cut out to be. He sings, "But I grew up broken-hearted and all my dreams turned blue," when the revelation hits him. Gomez's songs make you wonder when you first understood the concepts of imperfection and flaw - when you first began to feel your masterpiece crumble, or just not take as easily as you hoped it would. He reminds you that often you're just terrorized by the ugly odds. He reminds you that sometimes everything just results in a smear and a smudge. It's an approximation of the original sketch, but a fat, clumsy palm has bastardized it as it was setting, waiting to dry.
Max Gomez Official Site