Friday, January 7, 2011

Review #201: Grrrl Friend - Isolation, Chronic Masturbation & Daydreams (2010)


Year: 2010
Genre: Punk Rock/Folk Rock
Label: Wrong Island Records
Tracks: 11
Length: 34 Minutes
My Rating: 7/8

After several EPs and demos released digitally, this iz the first "official" Grrrl Friend album, actually being released in the physical form of a CD which can be bought from the band or you can get it for free from one of their shows. The album basically contains a select 11 songs from the band's "early" studio recordings, 2007 to 2009. All the songs on this album were previously featured in "The Rag", "Grrrl Friend", and "Some Say It's Genetic", some early digital releases from the band. However, Duffy insists that THIS is the first real Grrrl Friend album, so that's basically what this is. But because of it being compiled of various studio sessions spanning over 3 years, there were many different line-ups that recorded different songs. The earliest line-up here is the one featuring Duffy (guitar/vocals), Elyssa Lovelyss (bass/vocals), Jay Briggs (guitar/vocals), and Mike Tambo (drums). In mid-2008 Elyssa Lovelyss left the band and Jay Briggs also left to continue on with his own band, the Sonitus Revolution. The second female vocalist, Cora, is featured in the songs recorded in the 2008 and '09 sessions. Tambo and Duffy are the only members playing on all of the songs. I've already reviewed all of these songs in other reviews so I'm not going to do it again, but I will list them and when they were recorded and describe them in a nutshell.

1. The Hat Was Too Tall
Recorded 2009 in Portland, Oregon. Starts out as a noise collage and then turns into a folk song.

2. Roadside Picnic
Recorded 2009 in Portland, Oregon. A love song with a really good guitar riff.

3. Ibsen
Recorded 2008 in Portland, Oregon. Angry song.

4. Probably
Recorded 2007 in Long Island, New York. Fast song.

5. The Rag
Recorded 2007 in Long Island, New York. A fast song about a girl with venereal disease.

6. Toole & I
Recorded 2009 in Portland, Oregon. The song that this album gets it's name from.

7. Bestiality BBQ
Recorded 2009 in Portland, Oregon. A country-type of song making fun of hillbillies.

8. The Slope
Recorded 2009 in Portland, Oregon. Melancholy psychedelic rocker.

9. Hanging the Executioner
Recorded 2008 in Portland, Oregon. Angry song about being a social outcast.

10. Borscht
Recorded 2008 in Portland, Oregon. Angry hardcore punk-type of song.

11. Mine
Recorded 2007 in Long Island, New York. Sounds like Beat Happening.

Shortly after they put this one out, the band "retired" the demos from which these songs originally came, so a lot of songs that also could have been on here were kind of relegated to obscurity. Really good other songs they did like "Ouch!" and "Homesick" and "The Flow" and their cover songs. And then there's their REALLY old stuff they did, but Duffy disregards most of those as not being "true Grrrl Friend", so most of that probably won't see light again. But hopefully they'll re-record some of their other songs they have for their next album which is supposed to come out THIS YEAR on GNAR TAPES! WHOOHOO! It'll be fun to hear more new Grrrl Friend.

Most of the songs on this album make up their current live set, along with songs like "Doppleganger 12-Step" which haven't been featured on any albums yet. The earliest stuff on here is sort of a gritty pop-punk that reminds me of a cross between Nirvana and Beat Happening. After that their sound changed a little bit and they added more folk, noise, and hardcore influences to their music. All of the songs on here are really good and if you're looking for a great new band to listen to then Grrrl Friend is the band I recommend. You can hear the whole album on the internet for free on here:

Stay tuned for the next album. And I know this was kind of a "weak" review because I didn't do very much actual reviewing, but I promise I'll be doing more this next week. So seeya later.

Top 3 Favorites:
1. Roadside Picnic
2. Probably
3. Mine


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