By: Jim Sim
There are some moments in life when you are hit with a pure uncompromised, unmistakable emotion. It is something that can only be defined by the pounding in your chest, the tremor of your fingertips and the twitch in your eye. Often it is something that can be extremely hard to put into words, but you know like hell that it is there.
Fifteen seconds into “Cut the String,” the opening track on Grunge Dad’s mid-December 2017 I Feel Weird EP, you will feel this raw emotion. And it continues through all three powerful tracks on the band's debut release.
From the second the record starts, there is an immediate draw to hooky bass lines, built-up drums and straight-ahead vocals that let you know where you stand in this beautiful distortion-filled void. Distinct grunge vibes in the opening track are undercoated with a simple and familiar pop-like drumbeat that, when mixed with crunchy guitar tones, seems reassuringly unfamiliar and fresh.
“Heavy,” the middle track, softly marches through an eerie guitar pattern spattered with psychedelic lyrics about rose gardens and watchmakers. Most likely my favorite of the record, this track crashes into a double hook ending that is as weighted as the title suggests, containing the EP’s title in the lyrics.
The third and final track on the EP sums everything up with a wonderful collage of the few tones and styles explored on the record. “Now?” stays consistent with a heavy amount of guitar overdrive on the verse, with lyrics that nod toward what the listener could conclude to be genuine classic teen angst. With a well-defined vocal melody driving the chorus over pop-punk distorted guitar chords, it is the perfect track to end a very well put together debut EP.
Ladies and gentlemen, Grunge Dad is not your typical garage rock act. With various genres being intertwined, all while maintaining a signature sound, you could place the band’s influence on either end of the spectrum of eras; somewhere between The Melvins and JEFF The Brotherhood.
Self-described as “demos written in a moldy, subterranean storage unit,” I Feel Weird feels like a number of different raw emotions that cut deeply through these three tracks. You will feel loved. You will feel anger. You will feel sad. You will feel something unique creep up that may seem unfamiliar, but all anxiety melts away as lead singer Lisa Brokaw chants, “I feel weird, I feel weird, I feel weird, I feel fine here.”
Find all things Grunge Dad here on Facebook. Its next show will take place on March 22 at Cafe Bourbon St. Doors open at 9 p.m. with music from California Cousins, Queer Kevin and Farseek starting shortly after. There is a $7 cover at the door. More info about the show can be found here.