When you mention The Griswolds to the average person, they probably think of the Vacation film series. However, they’re also an indie pop band from Australia who often mention MGMT, Of Montreal, and The Beach Boys as some of their influences. Thanks to a local popular alternative station spinning their song “Beware the Dog”, I became aware of this band last summer.
The song has a positive sounding vibe, but like many songs out there, it’s lyrics tell a different story. The lead singer and lead guitarist of the band wrote the song about someone close they knew who died from heavy drug use.
There are so many double entendres. “We used to go where the cool kids go, but now you’re just too lazy. We used to joke and it felt like home, but now you’re f***ing crazy.” The song peaked at #18 on the U.S. Alternative Songs chart making it their most well known song.
Shockingly, this band’s debut album Be Impresive only reached #197 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart. What the hell America?! For a band that get’s rave reviews from many blogs and even Rolling Stone magazine, they just haven’t made a huge dent in the music scene, especially with the alternative crowd.
They had trouble writing the album in the beginning. According to their Facebook page they had gone to a studio (where Tupac was shot) in New York to write during a polar vortex. From there progress was made. The album is intentionally full of anthemic get on the dace floor tunes. “We’re all about melodies, big hooks, choruses you want to singalong to and having lots of fun.”
I bought their album right after their “Fuzz Fest” appearance in Moosic over the summer. I immediately added their tracks “16 Years” (featured in the Fifa ’15 soundtrack), “If You Wanna Stay”, “Down and Out”, “Be Impressive”, and “America” to our campus radio station 90.7 WCLH. This album is really stellar. Although the songs are mostly about drugs, it’s about the dangers of them. The lyrics are unmistakeably masked by danceable instrumentals that fit well at festivals.
The four members of this Australian band are the best of friends and completely in love with each other. This is shown through their good vibes and high energy on stage. Although they might not have had a huge breakout moment with their debut, it’s most likely going to happen sooner than later. This fall they will be touring with New Politics and Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness. The final scheduled date has them in Philadelphia which I’ll be counting down since I just bought tickets to see.