REVIEW: Dave Goddess Group in Back in Business at Godfrey Daniels

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BETHLEHEM, PA – At this point in his musical career, Dev God He has music that can relate to the lives of most adult listeners, from the carefree triumphant tunes of the band Daddy Licks to the resigned and insightful songs from his new disc, “Back to Business.”

Goddess and his Dev God Band performed at Godfrey Daniels’ debut on Friday – an hour and 45-minute show of 24 songs (plus intermission).

What’s perhaps surprising is that – at least for those in the audience who are 50 or older at Godfrey’s – the new songs are probably the best and hit home the hardest.

But perhaps surprisingly – at least for the 50-and-older audience at Godfrey’s – the new songs may be the best, and they hit home the hardest.

That was true, from the opening song, “Beautiful World,” the title track from God’s 2016 album Best Of , “I don’t want to lose another minute/This world is beautiful, let’s get lost in it.” with the caveat that.

And the rocking continued with 2022’s “One Way Ticket” (“It’s Only a One Way Ticket/Enjoy the Ride”) and the new “Someone Worth Waiting For,” which, even after all these years, still sounds very stylish. Daddy Licks Band.

John J. Moser


Godfrey Daniels of Bethlehem in Dave’s God Group. From left, Robbie Bossert, Goddess, Mark Buschi and Chris Cummings

High with enthusiasm

Those opening three songs were played on guitar only by God with bassist Mark Buschi, but the reflective mood continued when drummer Chris Cummings joined for “Dance” from God’s 2020 disc “Once in a Blue Moon.” Emphasized rock, with songs like “Hey!” Chorus, the audience’s heads started bobbing to the music.

And God added harmonica when steel guitarist Robby Bossert joined for the title track from God’s 2018 EP, “Last West Side Cowboys.”

Some of the songs — even the new “Automatic Slim” — had a distinctly country sound, though that may have been down to Bossert, especially on the slow and mournful new song “Blessings in Secret.”

The band closed the first set with a strong “Wild and Willing” from God’s 2010 disc, “Something New.” The lyrics of the title were wailed out with obvious enthusiasm.

But the band closed the first set with a strong “Wild and Willing” take from God’s 2010 disc, “Something New.” The lyrics of the title were wailed out with obvious enthusiasm.

After a 10-minute hiatus, Goddess and Bushi returned with “Tinfoil Hat,” followed by an excellent performance of the new “Pretty Soon Too Late,” which Goddess described as “one of those old songs.” “

But he clearly connected with the audience, which gave him the big hand of the evening.

Dave God's team plays Godfrey Daniel in Bethlehem

John J. Moser


Daddy Licks Band sax player Tom Brobst.

Still making music just as well

Even better – perhaps the best of the night – was his new “Signs of Life” about the isolation of life during Covid-19, in which he says he wrote the lyrics on “Back in Business”. The song’s squealing guitar buys his positive attitude, from refrains to “we’re on our way” over a simple beat.

It turned around.

Also the strong slow country “Tears in the Rain” from God’s 2018 disc “Last of the West Side Cowboys” and another slower offering “When the Past Clings to John Henry’s Weaving” from “Once in a Blue Moon”.

Goddess also performed two covers – Bob Dylan’s “Mighty Queen” and the Beatles’ “She Loves You” done as a country mash-up – and showed his influence.

The show is stacked with new songs: “Calico,” the excellent “Hey Romeo,” the title track “Back in Business” — played with gusto — and the show’s closing “I’ll Do It Again” makes its meaning clear.

But Daddy Lix’s “You Can’t Get Out” with Brobst again on sax brought it all back to the beginning.

It shows that the music Goddess made at that time was very good, but she is still making good music.

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