The Right Now

Home is the feeling that bubbles up irrepressibly inside of you when you arrive exactly where you belong. Coincidentally, the feeling that you get when you listen to The Right Now is awfully similar.

The Right Now plays soul music, and soul music is all about feeling; not style, not fashion, but emotion. The band’s new album Carry Me Home, released on March 3, 2010, lives within the four walls erected by the arresting lead vocalist Stefanie Berecz, the stellar songcraft of Brendan O’Connell, the spot-on horns and layers of back-up vocals, and a solid bedrock of rhythm.

Stefanie Berecz’s voice is what takes the songs on Carry Me Home from infectious to revelatory. Nowhere is that more evident than on the album’s title track. Begun in a hushed, delicate tone, Berecz weaves a tender lullaby, gradually building in intensity but never mindlessly belting. The band matches her every step of the way. The Right Now is tighter than tight, at times functioning almost as a single instrument rather than a collection of players; never overplaying, always exerting effortless control over its dynamics.

This telepathic connection is the kind of chemistry that can only come from relentless gigging. The Right Now continually tours the country, converting listeners to a brand of R&B that is simultaneously classic and contemporary.

Case in point: “Ain’t Going Back.” Beginning with a deeply funky dialogue between two guitars that could have been on an early Parliament record, Berecz comes in with a blue note that is pure Chaka Khan. The restraint of the first verse gradually opens up into what can only be described as an anthem, with Berecz firmly in charge, giving back her wedding ring. The ingredients are classic. The result? Nothing but contemporary.

The music on Carry Me Home exudes confidence. One listen makes it clear that The Right Now is a band that knows exactly where its home is: onstage. Home is a feeling. And The Right Now brings that feeling to every show, in every venue, in every town they play. If you’re lucky, your town will be next.