No surprise – here’s another great record on Exploding in Sound. The label seems to be recruiting an X-Men fighting force of top Massachusetts bands. Grass is Green are Allston veterans who steadily release shifty-eyed splatters of thinking-man’s guitar rock. Their fourth full length, Vacation Vinny, darts around with controlled mania like a disturbed kid on a leash.
Grass is Green’s monster rhythm section is a destroyer-of-worlds, bashing the skins in and rattling my ribcage while still dexterously hovering around tempo (they got that FEEL, man). This solid foundation allows for the disjointed, closely dissonant guitar reaches that slice in stereo pan. It’s an aggressive sound, but they still maintain a dynamic awareness, building and dissecting pedal layers around the melodic bass. My favorite moments are the syncopated interplays (that abound), especially the snark of “I’m From Dot Too” and the fluid noise funk of “Tambo.”
The songs stay punky in Andy Chervenak’s extended-arm strum and snotty vocal delivery (that at times sound as if Brandon Flowers swapped sequins for pick guard stickers, but that’s probably just me). “Spore” is a psychotic lullaby, ending with phantom whistling leaking through fee-fie-fo-fum squeals. “Vacation 2.0” is radio-ready, building a sonic narrative from sultry whispers to a confluence of paranoid shards to jagged full-band stomps.
Grass is Green is in the midst of a southern tour with Speedy Ortiz, but will be back home on January 25th with Ovlov, Krill, Palehound, and Trespasser at the Elk’s Lodge.
Sail on, oh mighty ship of Massachusetts indie rock. Buy vinyl here.