#24 on the 2011 Musical Bacon Calendar
EP by Grouplove
Allow me to tell you the story of a band that obviously had some talent, put together a fantastic EP, and quickly proceded to explode in indie-rock popularity (if that’s what it can be called). It just so happens that that band has an absolutely horrible name, Grouplove, and unfortunately, only fleeting talent (as judged by me, who has no talent), as proven by their less-than-stellar full-length release later in the year.
So this is an interesting diversion in the usual drivel I spout out here on the calendar. I’m promoting a fantastic EP, but not the full-length that followed. I expected huge things from Grouplove (name aside), but those expectations fell flat. I anxiously awaited the release of their full-length after falling in love with the EP back in January. But when Never Trust A Happy Song finally hit the record store shelves, I just couldn’t bear it. Not exactly sure what happened, but I think it’s pretty rare for a band to not exist prior to this year and manage to come out with a great first record then suffer from the sophomore slump within the span of 9 months.
They did just recently perform on Letterman, so somebody must still be liking them out there. They just aren’t for me. But for the span of a few months, Grouplove’s EP was held high in my playlist. And I guess it still is, because here we are at #24 in the Calendar.
If you like Modest Mouse, Built To Spill, and the like, then you’ll like this EP as much as I did. Back in June I got to see the band at the relatively small Tractor Tavern, and it was a great show. They played a rousing set, and even the new stuff impressed me then:
They played all six songs from last year’s EP, as well as a handful of new songs that will be released on their forthcoming full-length in September. The small Monday-night crowd ate it up, bouncing off the walls to old and new songs alike. The evening came to a rocous conclusion with “Colours,” which has seen modest rotation on KEXP over the past couple months. I was pleased to hear the new songs stand up to the strength of the anthems on the EP. If the rest of the album is built on the songs we heard on Monday, it will certainly end up on a lot of end-of-year lists.
25. Fan Chosen Covers (Best of) by Eef Barzelay
26. TKOL RMX 1234567 by Radiohead
27. Organ Music Not Virbraphone Like I’d Hoped by Moonface
28. Heavy Boots & Underwoods by Ben Fisher
29. The Rip Tide by Beirut
30. Collapse Into Now by R.E.M.
31. I Am Very Far by Okkervil River