I have always said you can tell a lot about a band by the songs they cover. Often times with a new original indie band, that task is harder because they want to release only their work and let the listener decide. I came across a new band recently from Florida that is so confident in their own music that they have included a cover on their debut album. Was it a conscious decision to nudge the listener in a particular direction? I suspect so. The band is called Greye out of Daytona Beach, Florida. At first glance the band appears to be a traditional folk based unit but if you think that, you would be sorely mistaken. Greye combines elements of folk, R&B, Americana, jazz and rock into a style all their own they call progressive folk music. Greye has the unique ability to weave complex melodies, intricate lyrics and hypnotic vocals into a brand of indie pop that is accessible and highly enjoyable. The production is first rate and I would expect Greye to attract a legion of new fans with this debut release.
The cover song included on “Providence” is a tune made popular before most of the members of the band were born. The song is ‘What I Am’ which was a minor hit for Edie Brickell and the New Bohemians back in 1988. The song is covered flawlessly and melds seamlessly with the original compositions on the album. All that being said, one of the most interesting things about Greye is the songwriting itself and where it comes from. The principal songwriter for the band is a seventeen year old high school student named Hannah Summer who also sings lead vocals for the band. An interesting fact that in and of itself is not earth shattering but listening to “Providence” you hear a maturity and polish you would not expect from a group of young adults.
Knowing what I know about the band, I could draw comparisons to Victor Frankenstein and his trusty knave, Igor. You see, the drummer in GREYE is a seasoned veteran in the music business some 20+ years senior to the rest of the band but it works remarkably well. Ray Grimaud has instilled a work ethic in these young adults and tolerates nothing but professionalism in his charges. Ray knows what it takes to be a success in the industry and the other members of the band may not know how lucky they truly are to have Ray in their corner.
There are several bright moments on “Providence” beginning with the opening track ‘Greye’ which establishes a groove consistent throughout the entire album. ‘Josephine’, ‘I Love You’ and the title track ‘Providence’ are all radio ready and aurally scintillating. In the indie rock or alt-folk or progressive folk movement, Greye stands out as a band to watch.
Check out the band HERE
Uncle Duke; a.k.a. Rob Penland is the producer and host of "The Mad Music Asylum" a 4 hour weekly syndicated radio show and now a 24 hour streaming internet station.