By Devon Hannan, Features Editor
I’ve never really been the kind of person to go out and search for music on the internet. The deepest I typically go is my Discover Weekly playlist on Spotify. I never rake through bands on Bandcamp or lurk between the crevices of technology to find my new muse.
However, luckily for me, there are always plenty of musically superior individuals who constantly invalidate my music taste and play something I’ve never hear of before. I’ve had a lot of, “Oh this is alright, but have you listened to THIS?”
Nine times out of ten I have not, but you know what else is nine times out of ten? The ratio of bands they force me to listen to that I just don’t particularly like. But every once in a while there’s one or two gems that by the end of the song I nonchalantly ask, “Okay, who were they again?”
To which on one occasion they responded, “Nana Grizol.”
I vividly remember when I first listened to this band. I’m not sure if it was the environment or the emotional state of being, but Nana Grizol clung to me harder than anything before. I was driving home in a steady rain when I was stopped at railroad tracks. My phone screen lit up with a link to the song, “Cynicism.” I had never experienced such an immediate love for a band, and I haven’t ever since.
The song started out with a twinkly, hollowed out guitar – something that I am always down for. Quickly thereafter, nasal vocals stretched out over the simple guitar pattern – something that I am almost never down for, however the lyrics in this tune made me ignore it. The song was very short, running just over the two-minute mark and after about two thirds was over, a robust trumpet blares out of my speakers. In just those two minutes, the track hits upon everything that is truly important in your average life: friends and love, doubt and the universe, songwriting and coming to terms with the unknown. I was sold.
Even though this is a band I’ve been crying over for quite some time, I never dove head first into their full discography until very recently. Nana Grizol calls themselves an indie folk band. However, they bleed into other alternative genres such as pop punk and shoegaze. To most people they sound like less funded version of Andrew Jackson Jihad (now simply AJJ). I can’t really argue with that either. Mix AJJ with Foxing, and a dash of Neutral Milk Hotel and there you have it- Nana Grizol. Considering the fact that two members of Neutral Milk Hotel are in this band, this doesn’t come off as a surprise.
Nana Grizol only has two full-length studio albums, and the latest album, Ruth, was released back in 2010. Despite being very inactive in the studio, the band has been on multiple tours since then, even playing a few shows in 2016.
Love It, Love It, Nana Grizol’s first album, is simply a feel-good, spirited masterpiece. It never at any point crosses the line into being sad- maybe at most being a little self-reflective. It’s an album that I can see myself sitting on the porch (that I don’t have) and drinking 17 Arnold Palmers to. Ruth is a bit more mature and a lot more twinkly. The difference between the two albums is colossal, but they are both really dang good.
Nana Grizol, without a doubt is going to be making an appearance on several playlists this summer. They radiate the ideals of living in a world that is so vastly diverse, coexisting among people that are just as confused as yourself. Nana Grizol wants you think that living isn’t such a bad thing. They’re a change of pace and absolutely necessary to anyone who needs a good pick-me-up.