Marty Scott, managing director of the legendary Jem Records, LLC, has announced the signing of New Jersey Psych-Pop Rockers The Grip Weeds. Their new album, How I Won The War will be released on April 7th via Jem Recordings.
How John Lennon Helped The Grip Weeds Win Their War
In 1967 John Lennon starred in a cult film called How I Won The War. In 1988, a band from New Jersey derived their name from Lennon's character in the film, Musketeer Gripweed. In 2015, The Grip Weeds devised an album that delivered on the promise of the lackluster film's lofty title.
In truth, How I Won The War, the sixth Grip Weeds studio album of new material, features more emotional depth and a greater plot than the film of the same name. Like any great piece of art, the themes explored by The Grip Weeds in this 'concept' album are universal, yet there is plenty of room for the listener to insert themselves into the proceedings.
Featuring vocal harmonies that would make CSNY jealous and muscular musicality on par with The Who, How I Won The War is the edgiest Grip Weeds album to date. There is no shortage of visceral stompers ("Rise Up", "Follow Me Blind"), but How I Won The War is no one trick pony. "Other Side Of Your Heart" is an acoustic-driven slice of modern psychedelia that early-era Pink Floyd fans are sure to enjoy. "Life Saver" is pure power pop with an introspective bent, while "Rainbow Quartz" and "Over And Over" take wistful looks back to budding relationships and salad days. The pounding groove of "Force Of Nature" alone will remind Mods young and old what attracted them to rock and roll in the first place. Fittingly, the album closes with a stomping yet entrancing take on The Beatles' "The Inner Light".
The past few years have been busy for The Grip Weeds. After releasing their magnum opus double album Strange Change Machine in 2010, a holiday album Under The Influence Of Christmas in 2011, concert set Speed Of Live and companion DVD Live Vibes in 2012 and rarities collection Inner Grooves in 2013, the band found themselves at a crossroads.
"All bands go through their rough periods and The Grip Weeds are no exception," said lead guitarist Kristin Pinell. "Being in a band with my husband and brother-in-law is a double-edged sword. The familial bond helps us endure some situations that usually kill other bands off. Conversely, it's tougher to leave arguments in the studio when your bandmates are also your family." The tensions within the band on a personal level triggered the ideas explored musically on How I Won The War.
"Our new bassist Dave DeSantis really pulled us to another level," said vocalist/ guitarist Rick Reil. "Kurt and I were at each other's throats during the early stages of this album, but Dave's musicality and easy demeanor inspired us to get down to what's really important to us- our music."
1 How I Won The War
2 Rise Up
3 Follow Me Blind
4 Life Saver
5 Other Side Of Your Heart
6 See Yourself
8 Sounder (instrumental)
9 Force Of Nature
10 Crossfire (instrumental)
11 Heaven And Earth
12 Over And Over
13 Rainbow Quartz
14 Truce (instrumental)
15 Lead Me To It
16 Aka Victory
17 The Inner Light
How I Won The War will be available on CD, standard & high-resolution digital download and vinyl from Amazon.com, iTunes, major digital download destinations and music outlets from April 7th (vinyl release date is June 9th), but as always Grip Weeds fans get it first! You will have exclusive early access via email to pick up How I Won The War beginning March 24th– a full two weeks before the official release date! All formats above will be available to fans (vinyl will be a pre-order) along with a Deluxe Package exclusively from The Grip Weeds Online Store, which will include many extras– more details to come.
The first live show to support How I Won The War will be on April 10th at The Record Collector in Bordentown, NJ- see below for ticket info. More shows to come, but this one will be special!