Monday, June 28, 2010

Northside Fest Day 4 - Gray Goods at Coco66

For the final day of Northside, I went to catch up with Ryan from Grey Goods who were playing two sets last night... I headed over to Coco 66 for their early set booked by Bill from Brooklyn Vegan. Even though the venue is right down the street I actually haven't seen anyone here and the space is promising. It's a pretty huge, open space with tons of stage lights and a real stage. The venue threw all of it's tricks at the trio, smoke machines, green lasers, disco balls, but it doesn't phase these guys. The sound setup was impressive and Grey Goods was taking advantage of the volume. The tracks off the singles just get better with their live energy under these conditions. Trevor's keeping up by pounding the hell out of his rattling snare. It could have been mic'd, but I think he's just about to destroy it, but you have to. Precision and economy is their foundation. It takes foresight to have this level of restraint in coming up with this keep the tempo this's what's best for this particular song. This spirit of minimalism forces everyone in the band on a level playing field...and definitely less is more.
I guess it helps limiting yourself to a simple drum setup from the beginning as tom, one crash, it's a specific choice which must have it's advantages in those multiple show situations. They're always ready to pull over and set up in a parking lot. Give them a power strip and a microphone and they're ready. There must be a total of two pedals between them...

I just have a feeling I'm going to still be listening to this 5 years from now, and for the internet music age that's an eternity. It's like dog years...something like 3 real months equals 1 internet year, so it will be classic rock pretty soon, but I'll keep coming back to it.

Ryan also hooked me up with their final installment of the GG 7" trilogy, which I put on this morning. 'Color Divide' is surprising is on Acapulco Gold Ltd records...and they literally don't exist. Recorded just 6 months ago in Brooklyn, they run just around 3 minutes each, and I have to think it's almost a little too perfect, this master plan of next to nothing art, anti-effects pop...who's really behind this?
This one continues with that minimalist sleeve art, and it looks like that business man is leaving the city of huge skyscrapers shooting money out of the roof and night clubs. Is he ever going to be happy?
Color Divide is a great A-Side, starting with a punchy Austin bassline it's immediately destined for greatness. The vocals even naturally peak out a little on this one while Ryan goes back and forth from his trademark drawn out, slowed down beginning of a verse to hyper monotone delivery, all while pulling off these lyrics:
waving colors at the other side won't do
wasting your time
wasting all of mine
cant we all find better things for us to do
'Natural Selection' actually slows the Gray Goods tempo down and gets a little surf instrumental at the beginning. Ryans vocals are clearer than usual here, it's almost a low talking kind of hushed tone. There's a lot of room in this one and Ryan works off of just a bassline at one point, and I love that kind of breakdown back and forth...the ringing electric coming in off time, that jagged post kind of a way.

You can preview these on their Facebook page where the sound is way better it myspace.

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