I was asked last-minute to write the ‘Band of the Month’ column for December, a space typically assigned to present Culturefly readers with the all-they-need-to-know on a current trending or upcoming band or artist. In retrospect this strikes me as particularly strange timing as only last night could I be heard joking with a friend about how neither of us had really been paying much attention of late to the newest conceived fruits of the industry.
Still, I found one name to mention, which was that of Cardiff noise-pop agents Joanna Gruesome.
I guess if you forced me to put it down I’d have to say that, right now, their style appears indebted to a number of underground indie movements that span the last 30 or so years – for example it’s easy to hear the traditional hardcore punk rhythms in cuts like ‘Graveyard’ and ‘Anti-Parent Cowboy Killers’, and maybe some Sonic Youth interest in the welding of the guitars, and so forth. But, perhaps more obvious than that, is the number of contemporary influences sandwiched into the same can. Styles ranging from Noise Pop (think No Age and The Pains of Being Pure at Heart et al) to the emo sounds of the god-knows-what-wave-we’re-onto-now era are vastly present – especially in resulting conversations anyway, as you attempt to reference or explain the undisputed energy of this thing.
Whilst the group has only recently released its debut full length Weird Sister, it’s not so much that its arrival was ever overdue: in the three years they’ve been together the band has already gone through a number of line-up changes and sound modifications, not to mention a variety of EP’s and seven inches to document each stage of their progression.
Joanna Gruesome was listed as one of Rolling Stone’s ’10 Best Discoveries’ at this years’ CMJ in New York. The band will be playing a run of UK shows with Speedy Ortiz (another on that list) next February.
(P.S for those based locally the tour hits Brighton’s Green Door Store Feb 20th!)