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Grails not nearly as shape-shifty as prog rock

Concert experience a bit like trying to learn a foreign language

Expect the band to supply sludge.
Expect the band to supply sludge.

Right about the point when you’re thinking this is a band that should have never left the garage, Grails delivers. The band has a sound that is its own: in this case, nuanced, shadowy, ominous layers of rock and roll music that is greater than the sum of its parts. Not nearly as shape-shifty as prog rock, to the uninitiated Grails’ unkempt songcraft is worthy of a road map.

Video:

Grails, "All the Colours of the Dark+Immediate Mate" (Live Oxford Arts Factory)

Past Event

Grails

  • Monday, February 19, 2018, 8 p.m.
  • Soda Bar, 3615 El Cajon Boulevard, San Diego
  • 21+ / $15

The concert experience is a bit like trying to learn to speak a foreign language — say, French, where the rules of pronunciation are all off. What you learned in grammar class no longer applies. But the words sound interesting and complicated in a good way. To say that Grails is one of those unique life experiences would be an underestimation.

Grails is a trio from Portland with a good number of years together as a band. Alex Hall, Emil Amos, and late-comer Zak Riles released The Burden of Hope back in 2003. There’ve been nine albums since. They were calling themselves Laurel Canyon in the beginning but switched to the present name at the release of their first full-length album. It’s a loud-as-hell shoegaze kind of show, and the members are known to sometimes trade off instruments. The core trio travels with a couple of sidemen to help fill out the sound.

Otherwise, each of the core band members have so many side projects going that Grails is almost a side project in and of itself; it’s been six years since their last studio recording. Now touring behind Chalice Hymnal (released last year), Grails is surely a cultivated taste. This is not a mainstream groove built for everyone, even though one may detect influences as wide-ranging as hip-hop, Western film scores, and metal. It’s earned Grails a dedicated following over the past decade, proving that even in a Bruno Mars world, there’s always room for sludge.

Chuck Johnson also performs.

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Mother and daughter, Yolanda and Yolinda, are keeping the show going.
Expect the band to supply sludge.
Expect the band to supply sludge.

Right about the point when you’re thinking this is a band that should have never left the garage, Grails delivers. The band has a sound that is its own: in this case, nuanced, shadowy, ominous layers of rock and roll music that is greater than the sum of its parts. Not nearly as shape-shifty as prog rock, to the uninitiated Grails’ unkempt songcraft is worthy of a road map.

Video:

Grails, "All the Colours of the Dark+Immediate Mate" (Live Oxford Arts Factory)

Past Event

Grails

  • Monday, February 19, 2018, 8 p.m.
  • Soda Bar, 3615 El Cajon Boulevard, San Diego
  • 21+ / $15

The concert experience is a bit like trying to learn to speak a foreign language — say, French, where the rules of pronunciation are all off. What you learned in grammar class no longer applies. But the words sound interesting and complicated in a good way. To say that Grails is one of those unique life experiences would be an underestimation.

Grails is a trio from Portland with a good number of years together as a band. Alex Hall, Emil Amos, and late-comer Zak Riles released The Burden of Hope back in 2003. There’ve been nine albums since. They were calling themselves Laurel Canyon in the beginning but switched to the present name at the release of their first full-length album. It’s a loud-as-hell shoegaze kind of show, and the members are known to sometimes trade off instruments. The core trio travels with a couple of sidemen to help fill out the sound.

Otherwise, each of the core band members have so many side projects going that Grails is almost a side project in and of itself; it’s been six years since their last studio recording. Now touring behind Chalice Hymnal (released last year), Grails is surely a cultivated taste. This is not a mainstream groove built for everyone, even though one may detect influences as wide-ranging as hip-hop, Western film scores, and metal. It’s earned Grails a dedicated following over the past decade, proving that even in a Bruno Mars world, there’s always room for sludge.

Chuck Johnson also performs.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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