- Artist: The Grain
- Format: CD
- Release Date:12/9/2003
GRAIN's sound is equally inspired by straight ahead 70's rock & roll and post-punk. If the members of Television, Humple Pie and Mazzy Star all got together to jam, the result would be GRAIN! GRAIN's latest CD 'The Bad Years' was recorded at Sound of Music Studios in Richmond, Virginia. It was produced by Alan Weatherhead whose recording and production credits Sparklehorse, Mary Timmony, Nina Perrson & Clem Snide. The record blends lush arrangements with straight ahead 70's inspired rock and roll. GRAIN has had the oppurtunity to open for a wide range of artsis in their home town of Pittsburgh, PA; including: The Mooney Suzuki, Cheap Trick, Mark Farner, Santana to acoustic sets opening for George Jones & Patty Griffin. Amplifier Magazine Issue 42 - May-June 2004 review: On their second release, Grain check in with an album of big sexy riffs and melodic anthemic rock. Recorded at David Lowrey's Sound of Music Studios in Richmond, Va., the 12 tracks on The Bad Years range from crunchy '70s pop to layered instrumentals and thoughtful ballads. Instrumentally, the band is rhythmically innovative, guitarist Wayne Smith plays some of the most catchy chords around and singer Carla Simmons has a crushing swoon that gives each number a soulful urgency. "Landmine" is a building rocker, the guitar-drenched "I Ruined Love" is bombastic, elegant and fierce, and "Understood" is soaring and hard to resist. Produced by Alan Weatherhead (Mary Timony, Clem Snide), The Bad Years is a smashing second album that shows Grain are one of the most exciting young bands to watch. - Alex Green INDIE-MUSIC.COM Review: 'All the tracks on the album stand firmly together. There's no filler or weak material.' -- Benjamin Daniels POPMATTERS.COM Review: 'Grain's sound is both polished and raw, a sound that somehow encompasses in it's guitar-driven rock echoes of the Velvet Underground, Sonic Youth and the classic rock radio bands of the '70s.' -- Hank Kalet Pluginmusic.com Review: With vocalist Carla Simmons at the front of the musical ship that is Grain, the band's second album, 'The Bad Years,' is melodic and fluid. Simmons' vocals easily take and maintain control on 'The Bad Years' as focused and well thought out instrumentation comes together to form a sound that has found more than a little inspiration in the 1970s. Provoking curiosity more so than enlightenment, Grain hint at what the album holds as electronics whirl and echo on 'Intro.' Before you know it, the quiet introduction leads into 'Landmine' and Grain's instrumentation slowly creeps up on you with full, quick choruses. Organ shrilly adds to 'Jump Into The Fire' as Simmons' reiterates 'we could make each other happy,' adding a note of optimism as lively electric guitar takes command and sound soulful instead of premeditated. Drums pound on the quick driving 'Everything You're Not' for a let loose rock approach. Meanwhile the intricate and gentle melodies of 'Soul Session #5' and 'Understood' show a different side while the lightly echoing 'Third Floor' has a certain twang to transform the song into more than just a soft instrumental. Few albums give you a sense of complete control but somehow Grain manages to accomplish it. From the first notes on 'The Bad Years,' Grain sets the tone, as if to say, 'sit back and relax, we will take care of everything.' A relaxed and confident front woman, Simmons is anything but cocky or aggressive in her role, instead blending her solid style into the band's instrumentation - Corinne.
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