Superband three piece Grubs are Roxy (Two White Cranes, Towel, Joanna Gruesome) drummer Jake and Owen (Caramel, Joanna Gruesome). Their debut ‘It Must Be Grubs’ is a very limited co release from the excellent, home grown Tuff Enuff and Reeks Of Effort record labels. Grubs music consists of beautifully crafted, vocal lead harmonic pop songs over economical rhythms that sound simple but probably were really hard to write.
8/10 Robin Staff review, 12 January 2016
Well yeah, Grubs. It must be Grubs. Also, who are Grubs. If we do the usual comparative mixology, Grubs are members of the thankfully very sentimental pop band Two White Cranes and collaborators from twee-noise contingent Joanna Gruesome. In some eyes, this is an honest-to-god supergroup; at the very least the front cover boasts a really cute dog (“look at dog!”, exclaimed Clint in an attempt to explain the record to me). Let’s go.
Actually: is the dog called Grubs? No matter. These pop songs have the kind of gorgeously non-committal riffs you might have heard worming their way into Trust Fund records and Alex G songs, occasionally fuzzed up for an understated climax. There’s something immediately homely in this sound, even if the songs contain sideways glances at misery and an altogether downbeat resolution. Roxy and Owen (Gruesome)’s set up is ramshackle, but the moments where they come together make for pop songs: their dueting vocals feel kindly and communal, even though there’s only two of ‘em.
The drummer on this record is credited with being from “the internet”, which I can totally get on board with: I am from there. I am a Twitter account. His drumming blows a second wind into the record that can take it from bedroom sketches to proper punk songs; the result is a record that tips a balance between the all-acoustic pop of Girlpool and the rock sketches of No Ditching or Radiator Hospital. It's all just as well.
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- It Must Be Grubs by Grubs
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