Welcome to the LOUDEST DOT COM ON THE PLANET!
KNAC.COM
LISTEN NOW!WATCH NOW! LOGIN JOIN
MAGAZINEON-AIRDOWNLOADSCHATBOARDSCONTESTSSTORE
Reviews

GRETA VAN FLEET Black Smoke Rising

By Peter Atkinson, Contributor
Monday, June 26, 2017 @ 1:14 PM


- advertisement -
GRETA VAN FLEET
Black Smoke Rising

Republic Records




While Michigan quartet GRETA VAN FLEET is being hailed by some with “the future of rock” hyperbole, the band's sound is very much rooted in the past, indeed from well before any of the fellas was born.

Though GRETA has been kicking around for five years, it is still just basically a group of kids, barely out of high school. Yet, the band's four-track debut EP revels in the bluesy hard rock sensibilities of the late '60s/early '70s, most obviously that of LED ZEPPELIN, which itself was born of an earlier era. It sounds like something out of their parents' record collections, and is certainly a far cry from the kind of stuff most “kids these days” seem to be bashing out.

And that's both a blessing and curse. It's definitely a welcome change from the swoop-haired, neck-tattooed screamo and metalcore one has come to expect from this demographic – and it's unquestionably more inspired. At the same time, those inspirations are worn way out on the band's respective sleeves – at least over the first three tracks on the EP. Yet, instead of opting for mere contrivance, or worse, sheer mimicry, GRETA's freewheeling exuberance and seasoned chops give its music a surprising genuineness and spark, despite it's familiar sound.

The LED ZEPPELIN resemblances here are undeniable and, to a certain extent, unavoidable. Singer Josh Kiszka, one of three brothers in the band – the others being Jake on guitar and Sam on bass and keyboards, with childhood friend Danny Wagner playing drums – channels Robert Plant to a frightening degree. It's like they share the same voice, from the soulful delivery, jaunty cadence, impassioned moans and leonine yowls. Josh has been graced with a truly glorious and agile set of pipes, and he takes full advantage. As well he should.

His band mates, for their part, take that ball and run with it too. The opening track, “Highway Tune”, sounds right off of Physical Graffiti. Its gruff, shuffling guitar jangle, frisky rhythm and burly drums go hand in hand with Josh's howls and “oh mama,” “oh sugar” hippy romanticism – a common theme here. “Safari Song” is a more direct hard rocker that recalls “Ramble On” from the Zeppelin II era and boasts some nifty licks from guitarist Jake.

The ample keyboards, acoustic guitar/mandolin strains and Josh's “she's outta sight” sentimentality on the mellower “Flower Power” come across as a “Going To California”/“Your Time Is Gonna Come” hybrid – especially in the long organ fade out. The song's hint of psychedelia befits the title.

Things take on a comparatively contemporary air, though, with the title track, where Josh's delivery and tone sound more distinct and personal and his lyrics are more sedate, mature and current: “Many people are dividing, And a world apart with just one heart, Is bound to keel and fade away.” There's no “baby's,” “sugar's” or “mama's” here. The music has a sparse, laid back, “Under The Bridge”-era RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS vibe and its earnestness makes for a dramatic contrast to the more playful tunes that precede it. If this is where things are headed for the band, then the future holds promise indeed.

Still, even when GRETA is at is most ZEPPELIN-esque, it never feels as calculated or reverential as some of the more flagrant clones that have come before – anyone from KINGDOM COME to DAVID COVERDALE at his most covetous. Instead, it bears the sound of a young band trying to find its footing, and having some fun with it in the process. But when the moment comes, as it does on the title track, the serious, confident tone seem to indicate the foursome knows it might well be on to something. And it might very well be right.

3.0 Out Of 5.0


Please log in to view RANTS

If you don't have a username, click here to create an account!

Username: 
Password: 

Message: 
 
 

 





 Recent Reviews
CRADLE OF FILTH Cryptoriana - The Seductiveness Of Decay
AUTOGRAPH Get Off Your Ass
WRAITH Revelation
MORBID EVILS Deceases
THE HAUNTED Strength In Numbers
VENOMOUS MAXIMUS No Warning
GUNS ‘N ROSES In Ottawa, Canada
PARADISE LOST Medusa
BLAZE BAYLEY In Ottawa, Canada
SONS OF TEXAS Forged By Fortitude
NERVECELL Past, Present...Torture
GALAKTIKON Galaktikon II: Become The Storm
DORO In Worcester, MA
THY ART IS MURDER Dear Desolation
BLACKFINGER When Colors Fade Away
ACCEPT The Rise Of Chaos
SOIL Scream: The Essentials
SHAMAN’S HARVEST Red Hands Black Deeds
SCREAMING FOR SILENCE House Of Glass EP
JACK STARR'S BURNING STARR Stand Your Ground
ARCH ENEMY Will To Power
FIREBALL MINISTRY Remember The Story
MOTORHEAD Under Cover
JANET GARDNER Janet Gardner
ALESTORM No Grave But The Sea
CIRCUS MAXIMUS Havoc In Oslo
MARTY FRIEDMAN Wall Of Sound
DEEP PURPLE, ALICE COOPER, THE EDGAR WINTER BAND In Los Angeles, CA With Photos!
MICHAEL SCHENKER Michael Schenker Fest Live, Toyko International Forum Hall A





HOME | MAGAZINE | ON-AIR | DOWNLOADS | CHAT | BOARDS | CONTESTS | STORE | HELP

©2017 KNAC.COM. All Rights Reserved.    Link to us    Advertise with us    Privacy policy
 Latest News