Tuesday, March 26, 2013
REVIEW: The Growlers - Hung at Heart
Plying a rootsy, surfy psychedelic folk-rock that is sometimes mellow and sometimes a bit dark, Orange County's The Growlers are back with their third album, Hung at Heart. One thing any prospective listener needs to understand is that The Growlers do things their own trippy, free-wheeling way. They are wacky, lo-fi and decidedly not too serious. But that doesn't mean that the music is anything other than sublime. I'm enjoying this album immensely; it has a great party vibe and is on my list of potential top 50 albums for the year. And it doesn't mean that the band isn't devoted to achieving the sound that they want. At one point Hung at Heart was produced by Dan Auerbach, but The Growlers felt results were overcooked. So The Growlers, wanting to sound like The Growlers, re-recorded it themselves.
The tone is set from the opening track, "Someday" -
Immerse yourself in Hung at Heart and you'll find yourself surrounded by engaging, crunchy and slightly scruffy pop songs and nodding along to homespun -- and often slightly off-kilter -- philosophy. Nielson's low-register grumble fits the proceedings like your favorite wetsuit and the arrangements are excellent and varied. Trust me, you'll want this album for your summer evening beach parties. Or your pretend summer evening beach parties.
The Growlers are Brooks Nielsen (vocals), Matt Taylor (guitar), Kyle Straka (guitar) Scott Montoya (drums), and Anthony Perry (bass). Hung at Heart is released on Everloving Records in North America and FatCat Records in UK/Europe. The band is commencing on a European tour this week.
THE HUNG AT HEART GARAGE RECORDINGS ● ONE MILLION LOVERS from LEAF on Vimeo.