Aggressive, angular indie rock from Canada’s Greys for fans of Preoccupations, Unwound, Hot Snakes.
Greys Stream New Track “Fresh Hell” via Bandcamp
Fall N. America Tour Dates w/ Bully, White Lung, Big Ups
Photo Credit: Vanessa Heins
“Heavily cathartic rock” –NPR
“Outer Heaven serves as a most welcome reminder of indie rock’s iconoclastic potential, from a band committed to the belief that it could be your life.” –Pitchfork (7.8/10)
“Outer Heaven — the second LP from the veteran Toronto punks — feels weighty, crucial.” –MTV
Toronto’s Greys are streaming a new track today titled “Fresh Hell” on Bandcamp, boasting a new sound and a look at some of the bands who helped to influence it.
Singer Shehzaad Jiwani says of the track, “I wrote the lyrics for this song after hearing about Jian Ghomeshi’s acquittal, and of Rob Ford’s death. There seemed to be a baffling amount of support and sympathy for these public figures who were, for lack of a better term, total pieces of shit. Ghomeshi’s verdict only seemed to reinforce institutional sexism and rape culture, while Ford receiving sort of a hero’s funeral completely ignored all of the ways he negatively affected my city and most of its residents by being a racist, homophobic misogynist. I imagined this Orwellian future where anyone who disagreed with the public opinion was violently assimilated, which I think matches the cyberpunk vibe of the song. Get me off this planet.”
Grey’s most recent LP, 2016’s Outer Heaven is now available from Carpark in the US and from Buzz in Canada, and won critical acclaim from NPR, Pitchfork, MTV, SPIN, Consequence of Sound, Uncut and numerous other publications. Fresh off the road from a North American tour with White Lung, Greys will embark on another run of North American dates this fall (all tour dates below).
Outer Heaven delivers on the promises Greys made on 2015’s Repulsion EP, placing the band in more spacious environments and letting them build upon their noise rock foundation by incorporating new textures and dynamics to temper their trademark onslaught of discordance, which was already perfected on their debut record, 2014’s If Anything. Where their formative material saw them paying homage to their heroes, the new album sees Greys making a concentrated effort to realize their own sound.
Each song filters its subject matter through Jiwani’s wryly incisive perception of a myriad of topics, from a news story about a group of teens barbarically murdering their classmate on album opener “Cruelty,” to the advent of technological singularity on closer “My Life As A Cloud.” Elsewhere, on “Blown Out,” the frontman confronts his own mental health by painting it in the context of a relationship with a partner who doesn’t fully understand the unrelenting complexities of depression.
With their intense live show documented admirably on their previous releases – and honed alongside bands like Death From Above 1979, Viet Cong, Speedy Ortiz and Dilly Dally – the four piece sought to explore their more atmospheric tendencies on Outer Heaven. Produced by longtime collaborator Mike Rocha at the hallowed Hotel 2 Tango studio in Montreal (Arcade Fire, Godspeed You! Black Emperor), the record displays unprecedented depth and range for Greys, calling to mind groups as disparate as Sonic Youth, Swell Maps and The Swirlies without ever losing sight of what defines the band – a distinct mixture of melody and dissonance, order and chaos, volume and substance.
09/22 Madison, WI @ Frequency
10/12 Washington, DC @ Comet Ping Pong $
10/13 Brooklyn, NY @ Aviv $
10/14 Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie $
10/15 Montreal, QC @ Turbohaus #
10/16 Saint-Hyacinthe, QC @ Le Zaricot #
10/17 Quebec City, QC @ L’Anti #
10/19 Halifax, NS @ The Marquee *
10/20 Fredericton, NB @ The Capitol #
10/21 Ottawa, ON @ House Of TARG #
10/26 Toronto, ON @ Lee’s Palace *
10/30 Tallahassee, FL @ Club Downunder ^
10/31 Mobile, AL @ The Merry Widow ^
11/02 Oxford, MS @ Proud Larry’s ^
11/03 Memphis, TN @ Hi-Tone Cafe ^
11/04 Nashville, TN @ Drkmttr
11/05 Atlanta, GA @ 529
11/06 Richmond, VA @ Sound Of Music
* = w/ White Lung
^ = w/ Bully
$ = w/ Big Ups
# = w/ Partner