When people ask me who my favourite bands are, I list off the usual culprits as an indie kid lost in modern melancholy, still pointlessly pining for 2006’s second coming. Muse, Foals, Wild Beasts and then the odd local band from my beloved Birmingham. Soon however, I come to the point where I have to admit some of my favourite music genuinely comes from a band of friends I met at the University of Warwick. To date they have no official releases and only a couple of Battle of the Bands appearances with a smattering of live shows to their name, yet they still top my iTunes most played chart.
Having undergone several name changes since I first heard them in 2014, they now go by Grain Death and are cooking up some of the most exciting tracks I’ve heard anywhere. Recently they released what is a first single of sorts and it sounds mighty fine, especially considering it was apparently recorded in the guitarist Jeevan’s bedroom. I have no clue what ‘Springfield’ is really about, but it’s definitely something to do with The Simpsons. The high notes that follow the opening chords are dream-like in delivery and the almost hypnotic beat from drummer Jack Rawlins ties the song together perfectly. It’s a strangely uplifting track with an underlying yearning, like daydreaming about being in a better place. Even as vocalist Ed Randall calls “something bad is coming through”, you feel the crashing guitars signal music-made relief from the mundanity of everyday life […] perhaps that’s what is meant with “push my face in the humming TV screen”.
The iconic beginning of America’s favourite cartoon marks a place free from the kind of Trump-tastic vitriol and carpet bomb culture that have defined 2016. Bassist and blonde haired bombshell Jake Kardasz croons “Now I’ve grown to see the world/ Springfield seems more colourful” in a Ginsberg inspired spoken word overlap. As a recent graduate I couldn’t agree more. I’ve lost count of the number of hours I’ve spent hiding from the world behind that faded brown sofa.
Past experience has shown me that interpreting Grain Death lyrics is a treacherous path though. I once mistook a past song ‘Ambulances’ for a lovelorn lament “Won’t you come and waste your time with me and we can be together? I just want to drown in your silence” is what I heard a wanton Romeo pine to his unrequited love. In reality it was ‘bleed’ and ‘sirens’ instead of ‘be’ and ‘silence’, I think I remember a drunk conversation where it was revealed to be about a night Ed spent in a casino…
Either way, this track makes me happy as does its family film-esque video. Friendship plays a huge part of Grain Death’s music and watching the boys frolic around Warwick’s semi suburban pastures reminds me of the value of everyday laughs with friends.
Follow the band on Instagram (@grain_death) and like them on Facebook