Ask a group of musicologists what instrument stands out the most in rock, and chances are that most or all of them will -- without hesitation -- point to the guitar. Guitar-powered, guitar-driven, guitar-based -- these are terms that inevitably come up in connection with everything from rockabilly to grunge to death metal. But there is also a long tradition of piano rock -- a tradition that Jerry Lee Lewis, Elton John, Billy Joel, and Tori Amos have all been a part of. And it is a tradition that Goodbye Girl Friday fits into enjoyably well on Silver or Gold. This 2004 release indicates that David Sherman -- the singer/songwriter, pianist/keyboardist, and producer who leads this New York City-based trio -- has found his musical and creative voice after years of searching. Before Edison with the Weather became Goodbye Girl Friday in 2001, Sherman and his colleagues experimented with jazz-rock. But there is no jazz-rock on Silver or Gold -- only pop/rock, and memorable pop/rock at that. Drawing on direct or indirect influences that include Elton John, the Beatles, Stevie Wonder (minus the hard funk element), Simon & Garfunkel, R.E.M., and Billy Joel, Silver or Gold isn't innovative or groundbreaking but is a solid effort that shows a strong sense of pop/rock craftsmanship on Sherman's part. This 37-minute disc also shows how vital the piano (or electric keyboards, or organ) is to Goodbye Girl Friday; it is an integral part of what Sherman (who handles all of the songwriting) does on melancholy, introspective offerings like "Cold Summer Rain," "Faces," "Mother Me," and the country-influenced "To Be Cool." Melancholy is a word that describes everything on Silver or Gold -- melancholy, and world-weary (despite some dry humor on occasion). Sherman finds little reason to be optimistic on Silver or Gold, and that melancholia works to his creative advantage throughout the album.
AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson