Joey Groon

The Emptiness EP

Written by: TL on 19/08/2010 23:28:37

I guess when you're only releasing three songs pr. release, you don't really have to take as long between releases. An approach that seems suitable for Joey Groon, who labels his own music as indie/pop/soul, and whose last three-track EP I reviewed only half a year ago. The one-man-band/singer/producer is already back with three more songs for my consideration and yours, this time arriving under the title "The Emptiness EP".

While I wouldn't be surprised if Mr. Groon was a proponent of the emerging "Release less, just more often" approach that has been hailed as a saving grace for artists suffering in the rush of the ADHD generation, one could also imagine that each of these small releases is more like a snapshot of what Groon is currently experimenting with in terms of production. The reason I suspect this is that "The Emptiness" is noticably different from "Undefeated", in that its production makes its predecessor seem somewhat simple and minimalistic. Could be that Groon is using these small releases to test the waters while he experiments with different variations of his own sound?

Regardless, the songs here aren't really at all very poppy. They're also not very rock, they're more like.. I guess you could call it experimental pop, but I think the simple "alternative" label is just as fitting. I like the increased production, as it helps Groon stand out from the hordes of other indie-guys lining up to seduce the world with simplistic acoustic pop. Then the chilled out, thoughtful and almost lounge-ish soundscape presented on here is somewhat more remarkable. The horn signature of "Headlines Across Us" is slick and recognizable, the track sounding a bit like some of the weirder songs off the latest U2 record, while the 80's-ish darkpop of "Hollywood Girl" I would call flat out catchy, and definitely the most relisten-worthy Joey Groon song I've heard yet.

Still though, in all their indie-ness, Joey Groon's EP's, now counting "The Emptiness", are still more the kind of records that you hear, leaning back with a distant look on your face while you cautiously mumble; "Yeah, that's pretty cool actually", rather than your features ligthing up into your own personal variation of the awesome face. I like that the so-called "Radio-edit" of "Hollywood Girl" which is the one offered here, is cheeky enough to actually go poppy and openly aim to inspire some hip-movement in the listener. I think I might appreciate more such unashamed tendencies. For now though, Joey Groon is still more a case of curious quality than of "fuck me that's awesome".

Download: Hollywood Girl, Headlines Across Us
For The Fans Of: dark yet accessible indie/alternative

Release Date 01.07.2010
Sound Soldier Records

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