December 19, 2004
THE GRIP WEEDS – GIANT ON THE BEACH (Rainbow Quartz)
They're too shamelessly retro to ever make it mega, but New Jersey's Grip Weeds distinguish themselves from the planet's glut of Little Steven-sanctioned 60s revivalists by sheer professionalism. Giant On The Beach, like their previous album The Sound In You, is profoundly well produced, its psychedelic melodies, Merseybeat riffs and surf harmonies resonating with a clarity that, while stubbornly refusing to bring anything new to this genre, remind us of all that's good about the old. You can't see it on record, but drummer Kurt Reil doubles up as lead vocalist, though Les Paul-clutching Kristin Pinell sings her share too. And bassist Michael Kelly has clearly studied at John Entwistle's school of rock. If you never had the joy of watching Let's Active cover The Who's 'I Can't Reach You,' a Grip Weeds album may be as close as you'll ever get. B- Freebie: You can hear lead song 'Astral Man' at Giant magazine's online Jukebox.