Is it Grunge? No, maybe Punk… sort of. No, it kind of sounds bluesy. Can’t quite nail it down, and that friends, is the beauty of Psychedelta, the third outing from GravelRoad. This solid release will keep listeners on their toes from start to finish. All you musicians out there, be warned that this will be an active listening experience for you. Guitarists: You will be reaching for your coricidin bottle slides and your axe. You might even be tempted to run your acoustic through your amp. Bass players will want to find a space in this to thump, ever so gently. Drummers; this will require finesse. So, who are these guys?
GravelRoad are a Seattle based trio: guitarist Stefan Zillouxs, drummer Marty Reinsel, and bassist Kirby Newman. They have been playing together for seven years, and have been the backing band touring with T-Model Ford, the world-famous delta blues staple, and playing on two of his albums, The Ladies Man and Taledragger. Of course, they have also toured extensively on their own. Over the last few years they have honed a very earthy, authentic, dirty, raw alt-blues style that is unique but accessible. If you were forced to try and describe it, you might say something like “Take Chris Rea’s slide and voice, Eric Sardinas’ slide, Lee Rocker’s bass, and Patrick Carney’s intensity, throw all that in a blender and hit 10.” But friends, what has poured out of that blender is a wonderfully raw and beautiful slow burn.
There are several standout cuts on the album. “Nobody Get Me Down” is almost downright funky. “Furry” is about the closest to a “traditional” blues, with its wailing slide. “In The Woods” has a country sounding guitar riff and some great edgy fills throughout. “Deep Blues” is an upbeat blues, again with that very edgy guitar tone. “Caves” is interesting with its crying guitar(s) and sense of pain and loss. “Let Me Hold You” is very bluesy, with some very controlled playing from the band. The album is on Knick Knack Records and although the sound is raw and loose, the playing is excellent. Pick this album up!