Vol. 16, No. 1, January 2005

The Grip Weeds
Giant On The Beach
(Rainbow Quartz)

The Grip Weeds Giant on the Beach (Rainbow Quartz). With (at least) one foot rooted firmly in the past, NJ’s Grip Weeds have bridged the gap between old and new, crafting a baker’s dozen pop nuggets that recall the heyday of tuneful, ‘60s harmony-filled rock. The Weeds are a tight, succinct quartet that has muscle (thanks to the rhythm section of lead singer/drummer Kurt Reil and the round, McCartneyesque bass lines of Michael Kelly), plenty of rich three-part harmonies and a potent guitarist in Kristin Pinell. Rather than blazing leads, Pinell adds parts and textures (twin guitar lines, backwards leads, lots of faux sitar) that complete the recipe. While the songs echo the Beatles (“Infinite Soul,” the “Tomorrow Never Knows”-sounding “Telescope”) and the Byrds (“I Believe”), “Infinite Soul” is a winning combination of the two. Perhaps best of all are driving rockers like “Midnight Sun” (with Pinell channeling Roger McGuinn’s frenetic 5D electric 12-string) and the anthemic “Sight Unseen” (with a nice “paisley” twin guitar lead) which effectively meld all the influences together. ( Alpo.