Monday, September 19, 2011

Gardens S/T Album Review

Okay here it is. First, a bit of explaining. This is the long awaited debut album of Gardens from Detroit, MI. I first interviewed them back in 2010 when I started this blog. I spoke with a band member about this album at a show and he told me it was already released at that time. I was giddy as hell and ordered it. The record was great and I listened to it many times but didn't feel I could do an accurate album review of it until now. I didn't want to sell the band or myself short. So here it is.

Gardens have put out a couple 7inches one being on Italy Records another one Just for the hell of it Records. They also have a cassette release on Telephone Explosion Records. To my knowledge, they released the two 7inches first and then Debute album followed by the cassette release. ( feel free to put these guys on with an accurrate discography.) They also had burned cds floating around at some point in time. The self titled Gardens album was released on ALIVE NATURAL SOUND Records. It is sold through the BOMP store online. It's a Green Vinyl with album art of the band members.

The Original Gardens lineup consisted of:

Jeffrey Thomas-vocals/guitar

Julian Spradlin-precussion

Vincent Mazzola-vocals/bass guitar

Gardens added Matthew Mueller to the lineup after the Album tracks were recorded and that is why you do not see him on the album artwork.

Gardens consider themselves part of the new sound of Detroit. Gardens told me in an interview maybe more than a year ago that this album was due to be released. They had the master tracks for quite some time but it wasn't released until, May 10th-2010. Almost 9months after I spoke with them. Needless to say, I was in anticipation. The original tracks we're remastered. Their debut album was produced and engineered by Chris Koltay (Akron Family, Dirtbombs, SSM) at High Bias recordings, with Warren Defever of His Name Is Alive. After hearing the opening track I knew I was going to like this album, the guitars are loud and in your face when you listen to this record. They added more reverb on the vocals but not to the point where it sounds like Jesus & Mary Chain or the Raveonettes.

As soon as I got to the second track I could hear piano. Later in the record you will hear some organ. It was great. When I interviewed them earlier in the year I saw that very piano in Jeffrey's house. The record itself has a hint blues mixed with rockn'roll. The guitar is loud and the bass is bumping. You get the feeling of the Kinks meets the Booker T & the Mg's. While some tracks are heavy on piano/organ there are other tracks that are more primitive 3 piece rock songs. The whole album will get you singing and dancing by yourself.

The album itself sounds louder and a bit more crisper sounding than the 7inch releases but don't be discouraged because this is the same Gardens you know and love. The album was still recorded in lo-fidelity to my knowledge. Chris Koltay and Warren Defever did a really well job on engineering this album. While on some Gardens releases Jeffrey's voice may be a little more unclear you can make out exactly what he is trying to get across in this release. Keeping that in mind, there are no lyrics inside the album when you buy this. The majority of this album brought me back to when I first saw the band unsuspectingly. Discovering a great band is always a good reason to be excited. A few of the tracks on this release I hadn't heard to my knowledge but they were a pleasant suprise. Pick up a copy if you haven't already!

+plus factors in buying this release include:
Green vinyl with Free Mp3 download.
Cool artwork on back of release.
It's affordable.

where to buy:

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