Sunday, 23 March 2014

EP Review - Gilded Pleasures

Gilded Pleasures
by The Growlers
available now

How funny that I decided Sunday afternoon was the right time to write some words about the latest EP from our current Artist Of The Month, The Growlers, because Sunday afternoon is almost exactly what Gilded Pleasures sounds like it was made for. 

Opening with 'Dogheart II' and the strange lyrics "little girls don't last forever, enjoy them while you can" it doesn't take long to realise this is a band that won't hold back and aren't concerned about what you think of them, they're just here to play some tunes and have some fun, man. Isn't that how all stoner surfers speak? I don't really know, I'm not a stoner surfer and I don't really know if The Growlers are either, but they've made an album EP that certainly sounds like it and one that let's me pretend I like the beach and other things for a few minutes on a Sunday afternoon and lets me appreciate some music that sounds like it was made for California, a beach and a cold beverage. 

Second track 'Hiding Under Covers' increases the tempo slightly, with the keys taking it somewhere back to the 70s, while the single, 'Humdrum Blues' has a driving bass sound with a nod to some 90s Cali sounds, an almost happy sound for a song with such a depressing title, but it's the lyrics that reminds you who you're listening to "she's so tired of the humdrum and I understand, she wants something tangible like a ring on her pretty little hand". Yes, this is The Growlers.

'Tell It How It Is' is as close as you're going to get to a ballad on Gilded Pleasures, with Brooks Nielsen's vocals as strong as they get, his unusual style is a little addictive in this track, but it's the sound of 'Change In Your Veins' that really sounds interesting, almost Jim Morrison and Doors-esque in it's delivery. That's not to say this sounds dated, there's a little Porno For Pyros Perry Farrell-ish-ness that sneaks in there toward the end and I'm going to be honest and say I could never complain about a little Perry Farrell influence anywhere.

It's an EP that remains cohesive throughout, each track leading perfectly into the next without leaps and bounds that shock you into a sense of questioning, exactly as a Sunday afternoon surfer chilled EP should sound. It's not going to change the world, but then, not every song and not every album should. Some songs are just songs and that might be my Sunday afternoon brain talking, but then, that's the best kind of chilled thought process to have when visiting beach side California with a beverage in your mind on a weekend afternoon.

Jo Michelmore gives 'Gilded Pleasures' three Michael Hutchence heads out of five...

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