Dirty Grass

It's All About

Written by: BV on 13/02/2014 18:06:21

Danish psych, including garage, stoner and other affiliated genres, has been on a quite prominent rise these last few years. However, one must not forget that there was a time before Danish psych began to really get out of the mainstream, or at least make the statement that it was here and was blooming quite wildly. Back in 2009 a band called Dirty Grass, consisting of Morten Aron (Spids Nøgenhat, Ghost Rocket), Henrik ‘Hobbitten’ Klitstrøm (Spids Nøgenhat, On Trial), Sigurd Djurhuus (Tidsgæst) and Claus Rosenblad (Ghost Rocket) managed to record an album during their very brief time together. For a while it lay dormant, left to be forgotten until Levitation Records picked it up sometime last year and crowdfunded it so that Dirty Grass’ “It’s All About” could finally see its release on a limited vinyl pressing.

As the first garage-sounding notes of “Walk Away” resounded through my speakers I was initially unimpressed. - Mostly because I had started out by comparing the band to the far more aggressive style of Ghost Rocket. However, as I got through my usual 5-6 listens I became somewhat infatuated with the simple, authentic garage-psych tracks that had a phenomenal pop-sensibility to them. The guitars sound raw and the production is delightfully gritty whilst never really lacking in any department. Best and worst however, is perhaps Morten Aron’s vocal work. I completely understand that they are not suited for everyone. For me, personally, they do possess a sort of unique charm – a sort of naivety that somehow compliments the fuzzy tones in the strangest way possible. However, Aron's vocals aren't the only ones present as Claus Rosenblad shares the lead vocal duties with him - complimenting each other perfectly with an 'acquired taste' in Aron's vocals and a more mellow, stylistically safe approach by Rosenblad.

Throughout tracks like “Here Comes the Monster”, “Demon Girl” and even “Tomorrow It Might Be” there lies a certain power dormant. As if the tracks wield something more aggressive to them that yearns for being set loose. It gives the tracks a unique tint of something that is about to unfold, yet never really does – it mostly works in favor of the tracks by creating a tense, ‘stay on your toes-like’ atmosphere, however one might occasionally get the feeling that there is something strangely unresolved about the album as a whole.

“In the Shadows of the Sun” is perhaps the weak point of the album, as it winks in the general direction of a far more pop-sensible songwriting than it probably should. Seeing as Dirty Grass seem to be at their greatest in those buzz-saw sounding fuzz moments where everything is borderline chaotic and down-right punk-sounding, “In the Shadows of the Sun” seems strangely misplaced despite being a cool track on its own.

In essence, I’m quite glad that “It’s All About” got unearthed. It might not be a masterpiece, but it’s a skillfully executed grower of an album which marks a specific era in between the demise of Ghost Rocket and the, now broadly acclaimed, comeback from Spids Nøgenhat.


Download: Here Comes the Monster, Demon Girl, Walk Away
For the fans of: Ghost Rocket, Aron, The Seeds, The Sonics
Listen: Facebook

Release date 27.02.2014
Levitation Records

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