Wednesday, June 8, 2011
Theodore Grimm started out right here on Mint 400 Records. I remember when they first wanted to tour years ago but didn't have any merch and asked if I could help them get together a demo to sell on the road. So pretty much the first official release for Mint 400 Records would be the 200$ demo we recorded at a friends studio and the photo copied covers and hand stamped CD's held them over for the time being.
I remember the night that they chose the name Theodore Grimm, it was Halloween and they had found a grave stone labeled Theodore Grimm that they were using as decoration at their annual outdoor Halloween show. Before that they had been known as Razorblade Love Affair and had some lineup changes. Even back then their songs always had this chaotic charm to them. My involvement with the band over the years makes it all the better to report how amazing their newest album is. I was lucky enough to hear the 9 song garage rock dance masterpiece in its entirety before it's even been mastered. All of the elements are there that make up an amazing band and record. This is one of the few local bands that have influences that reach beyond the last decade. Whenever I listen to Theodore Grimm I always hear shades of Joy Division, 13th Floor Elevators, The Cure, Bauhaus, Gang of Four, and a billion other things. Mark Renda is one of my favorite guitar players, to me he ranks alongside the best, his riffs are somewhere between Joey Santiago of the Pixies and Dick Dale mixed with some Pink Floyd and thrown into a blender of 60's garage rock. David Grimm has always had the rockstar swagger but with this quality that let's you know he is genuine about what he is doing. His vocals on this new album are the best they have ever been, they are comparable to Julian of The Strokes but there is something more heartfelt about David's delivery because you know he's not the son of some millionaire, he's the working man. In a way Theodore Grimm always reminded me of early Black Sabbath because of the vibe and the place where they had all grown up. The sons of working people, Theodore Grimm seemed to always be playing on whatever equipment they could afford and they have been a band for almost a decade and somehow have always sounded great through it all from the crummy equipment to all the lineup changes. However Brian, David and Mark had always been at the heart of the band and finally it's like all the hard work has paid off with their first real full length record.
This record from beginning to end is an instant classic and I am so glad that the band has worked through all of the fights over the years and stuck out to make this record. Every song has a raw energy and haunting quality to it. It's something that you just have to hear for yourself. Something that makes music great for me is the pain you can hear in the authors voice, it's something you can say about artists from Nick Drake to Nirvana and in more subtle examples the Violent Femmes and Husker Du. It seems with Theodore Grimm that this pain is there and felt through every song, the words don't seem to matter as much as the feeling that the overall song gives the listener. Maybe that's just me reading into the record too much because I know the band personally but I think the average listener who enjoys some of the bands I mentioned will love this record. In conclusion all I can say is that I am so proud of where this band has come from and where they seem to be going.
For now check out the video above and expect this amazing album to be available soon from the band.