Sunday, September 24, 2006

The Grates, Gravity Won't Get You High

A friend of The Grates recently sent me their debut album Gravity Won't Get You High and asked me if I would be interested in supplying an album review. I was happy to oblige, because I became a quick fan after catching them on tour recently in support of The Go Team!.

The Grates are Patience Hodgson (vocals), John Patterson (guitar) and Alana Skyring (drums) and they hail from Brisbane, Australia. Each of the three members has a background in art, and they design their own album artwork, posters and merchandise. Their sound has been compared to other female-fronted bands such as the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and be your own PET, however they have their own distinctive musical style and I only hear elements of the aforementioned bands at certain moments.

On Gravity Won't Get You High, The Grates supply fourteen indie rock tracks full of high tempo energy and hand claps forcefully pushed along by the outstanding percussion work of Alana Skyring. If there is a crossroads in Australia where one goes to sell their soul for musical talent a la Robert Johnson, then I wouldn't be surprised if this young lady made a stop there. She is a very skilled drummer. The slightly distressed guitar that John Patterson supplies is something that at times sounds like a Jack White-inspired blues riff such as on "Trampoline." Then on the very next track "Science Is Golden", which is also their first single from this album, the guitar style shifts back and forth between pop and rock riffs. The vocals that Patience Hodgson supplies are fuller and more mature than what was heard on their 2005 EP The Ouch. The Touch, especially on the track "Feels Like Pain." All of these elements combine to create an enjoyable album, one which I think deserves more attention.


mp3 Feels Like Pain
mp3 Howl

You can visit The Grates on MySpace to view their current tour dates,
as well as purchase Gravity Won't Get You High through