Girls Guns And Glory

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In their new release, Pretty Little Wrecking Ball, Girls Guns and Glory adroitly captures what has long been viewed as country music’s biggest contradiction: toe-tapping sorrow. The Boston-based five piece masters this technique with such ease that it’s hard to believe they’re not from the Southern culture that inspires their music. Adding influences of rock, bluegrass, and rockabilly to country’s greatest attributes, the result from this Boston five-piece is a genuine and earnest sound. Averaging an age of 25, each member of GGG has been playing music for well over a decade. The comfortable knowledge each of them shares with their instruments is palpable; their songs are inventive and catchy, building complex walls of sound while still allowing the listener to hear simple messages within their melody.The recording process for Pretty Little Wrecking Ball began during last summer’s heatwave at Noise in the Attic Studios in Scituate, MA run by Producer Rob Loyot, where the guys were able to take their time in recording their second album in as many years. Recording the album over a period of five months, Girls Guns and Glory made sure the record was going in the direction they wanted. “We chose a lot of takes, not because they were the best executed takes, but because they had the best feeling. Our choices were based more on performance than execution,” says frontman and songwriter Ward Hayden, who - rhythm guitar aside - also has a history of playing drums, bass, and mandolin in other musical projects. A big fan of Hank Williams, his admiration of the legend comes from his ability to tell a good tale of heartache and woe with so few words. Influences also include the building composition of Bright Eyes’ songs, the gruffness and edge of Steve Earl’s music, and even the aggressive delivery in a lot of punk and hardcore. Although Hayden has an impressive music resume, percussionist Brendan Murphy also has quite a list: congas, djembe, washboard, guero, vibraslap, tambourine, shakers and chekere. “If it makes noise, then I’d like to get my hands on it” he asserts. Layering different percussive instruments to create a full sound, the unconventional backbone of the record’s music comes from the incorporation of that reggae style of recording into rock and folk. Colin Toomey, who coined the term “Business Elvis” for his signature hairstyle, is lead guitarist. “If it’s dangerous then I’m probably interested in doing it…or at least watching you try,” says Toomey. Drummer John Graham – aka Johnny Surprises –has been at it since his musician mother had him taking percussion lessons from Tito Puente. Adding to the mix is bassist Bruce “Bagley” Beagley who is equally inspired by traditional Irish folk music, 50’s rock and an impressive amount of outlaw country. Coming from so many different corners has allowed the band to explore a variety of sonic concoctions under the guise of Americana.In Pretty Little Wrecking Ball, layers of instruments converge to build a barrage of sound and excitement while other songs are intimate and personal. “Big Man,” with its driving rhythm, is the kind of track that grabs a listener from the start. While the song “Tennessee Rose” is haunting and sorrowful, exploring a different side of the band’s ability to create lush songs with simple instrumentation. “Tennessee Rose, you remain something that I’ll never know / I guess that’s how it goes / North is where I’m meant to be / I’ll be there ‘til the day my body’s cold,” sings Hayden. The plethora of instruments that normally color their songs take a back seat and the high, lonesome sound of Hayden’s voice soars over the acoustic guitar. The combination of backgrounds and musical talents that are at the core of Pretty Little Wrecking Ball are the driving force behind the accessibility of Girls Guns and Glory. The country twang mixed with the genuine sentiment of folk captures the attention of all listeners who can appreciate a catchy yet tho