Mat Brooke has come a long way since his Carissa’s Wierd project; his confidence is significant in comparison to its presence on the first Band Of Horses LP. In fact, listening to the stripped down tracks on Grand Archives‘ latest, Keep In Mind Frankenstein, (songs like opener “Topsy’s Revenge” and the near a capella “Siren Echo Valley (Part 1)”) he has gone through a major confidence boost since the group’s self-titled debut.
On Keep In Mind Frankenstein, Grand Archives continue down the path of beautifully crafted, multi-vocal pop songs. “Witchy Park – Tomorrow Will (Take Care Of Itself)”, “Left For All The Strays” and “Silver Among The Gold” hold just as much sway over the listener as “Torn Blue Foam Couch” and “Sleepdriving”, if not more. Grand Archives have succeeded in crafting a near perfect pop album, adorned with some of the most pleasant harmonies one is capable of hearing.
Lending backup vocals on track 6 is Carissa’s Wierd drummer (and now solo artist) Sera Cahoon, and on tracks 2, 4 and 6 is Jenn Ghetto (S, Carissa’s Wierd). Both add welcome female vocals to the harmony mix. And where Grand Archives included select tracks with a southern country feel, they once again invite Jay Kardong to lend his Pedal Steel expertise on “Oslo Novelist”, “Dig That Crazy Grave” and “Siren Echo Valley (Part 2)”.
These are songs that will burn themselves into your heart and your soul. With Keep In Mind Frankenstein, Grand Archives achieve the near impossible: they top their debut record!
Keep In Mind Frankenstein comes out September 15 on Sub Pop. Above photo by Fense at Bumbershoot 2007.
Grand Archives: Oslo Novelist [mp3]
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Grand Archives: Silver Among The Gold [mp3]
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Sub Pop Records [CD, 2009]
1. Topsy’s Revenge
2. Witchy Park – Tomorrow Will (Take Care Of Itself)
3. Silver Among The Gold
4. Oslo Novelist
5. Lazy Bones
6. Siren Echo Valley (Part 1)
7. Left For All The Strays
8. Dig That Crazy Grave
9. Siren Echo Valley (Part 2)