Alternative rock and electronic Los Angeles outfit Grizfolk’s debut album, Waking Up The Giants is out, and it’s pretty big. Full of huge atmospheres complimented by pulsating synths and loud powerchords, Grizfolk’s premiere is triumphant and definitely will get the masses moving.
The band does a great job at mixing their rock and electronic sound together and balancing them in each track. Opener ‘Into The Barrens’ starts off loud and strong, flaunting its big guitar sound but then falls into a widely electronic-led soundscape. The title track, ‘Waking Up The Giants’ does this too, beginning with an acoustic guitar and a small synth line that builds up into subtle choruses backed by a deep beat and loud synths. In the new single ‘Troublemaker’, vocalist Adam Roth gets some rock n’ roll vibes on top of a standard rock song, backed by brooding synthesizer bass and bent guitar chords. ‘Bob Marley’, while not embodying its namesake, also see Roth using the raspier side of his voice. Pop rock appeal shines strong in songs like ‘Hymnals’ and ’Waiting For You’. Some songs take a simpler approach, such as ‘The Struggle’ which sounds like a quieter Imagine Dragons.
While the first half is chock full of feel-good poppier tracks, the second half is more of a roadtrip album, filled with fantastic folk rock ballads with some great lyrics and tells somewhat of a love story. ‘Waiting For You’ has some country influences (especially in the vocals of the chorus and acoustic guitar), though the synths still prevail as a main component of the song. ‘Vagabonds’ is a standout track on the album, featuring a wonderful bassline from Brendan James, which adds so much color to an already sweet track. It’s during this second half of the album that the band takes a bit of a different direction. ‘Cosmic Angel’ is an acoustic track that builds up into a driving ballad led by guitars and a soft vocal line. ‘Bohemian Bird’ is another poetic tack that begins soft and builds up into something more expansive. The album’s closure track, ‘Wide Awake’, it a representation of everything this album built up to its name: loud guitar choruses and synth walls backing the verses and choruses lead to a triumphant closing track.
Grizfolk’s debut record is a lovely mix of electronic rock combined with alternative rock, something that’s becoming increasingly hard to find a good balance of. Waking Up The Giants does it very well, though the synths do seem more prevalent. The second half of the album is a gold mine of beautiful written tracks, while the first is full of feel good rock songs. A great album to debut on - they definitely have room to grow, but if this album is any indication of their musical possibilities, the future is bright.
Favorite Tracks: Wide Awake, Into The Barrens, Vagabonds, Waiting For You
Least Favorite Tracks: Bob Marley, The Struggle