ATP Recordings, which seems to have survived all the liquidations to date, releases the new record from Grimm Grimm, solo project of the ex-frontman of Screaming Tea Party. This is singer-songwriter material on carefully plucked guitar, but with the feel of strangeness and unknown places lurking beneath the echo.
7/10 Robin Staff review, 24 June 2015
Koichi Yamanoha is best known for cultivating psychobilly fervour as one very important part of the Screaming Tea Party outfit, and here he goes solo for a record not unlike its blurb artwork: a man, smiling a toothy grin, in what comes out as a very blurry photo. ‘Hazy Eyes Maybe’ is not always the most clear and distinct record, but it betrays a tenderness, a lightness previously unseen in Yamanoha’s character.
Taken as a record, ‘Hazy Eyes Maybe’ is out of sorts, a mesh of different ideas -- lush acoustic balladry, super twee arrangements and acoustically made ambience, thrown together to make a record that at turns sounds comforting and at others folkloric. In a sense, though, it’s easy to see this as Yamanoha trying to reduce psych rock into a purer, more traditional setting: the reverb that clicks through the record’s title track is a signifier of his musical expertise, but with surroundings of gently plucked guitar and secretively whispered vocals.
For the most part, it’s easy to go with the ride ‘Hazy Eyes Maybe’ and its myriad of acoustic experiments are taking us on, but Yamanoha is nothing if not a chaos merchant; he also leans towards the bubblegum punk his band can often master, and on “Walk Into The Cold Water With You” he lays a romancing bassline and a mundane, lovelorn whisper a chord sequence as simple as they come. Why? In the name of rawk and love, or something. For the most part, this is the sound of a songwriter being quite lovely.
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- Hazy Eyes Maybe by Grimm Grimm
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