Making Music: Grander Things
They say music is in the blood, and once you’re hooked, you’re screwed; you’ll forever have the itch to create and perform. For many, as they slip out of their twenties and into a more structured lifestyle, it becomes unscratched, only occasionally satisfied after too much wine and good spirits.
The members of Sydney band Grander Things stand defiantly against this trend, playing on while the rest of us complain that the neighbour’s music is too loud, forgetting we were once there ourselves. While some moan, they continue to rock and roll, with an energy that belies their years.
While Grander Things only dropped their first release, Mash, in late 2020, the nucleus of the band was formed many, many years earlier.
“About ten years ago, three members of late ‘80s band The Moon decided to get together each week to drink fine wine and write songs again,” guitarist Brent Williams explains.
“With a whole bag of songs, it was time to get someone who could actually sing. So around three years ago, we asked Liz Clear. Liz was dragged out of her alt/pop/country comfort zone and slotted in perfectly. Grander Things was now a band and not just a hang-over.”
The band consists of Liz Clear (vocals), Brent Williams (guitar), Rhys Lewis-Smith (drums) and Bruce Thomas (bass and backing vocals). All members have at some stage lived in the Eastern suburbs, and Brent is still in Bondi and “loving it!”.
Brent lists a range of influences, “From ‘70s punk, new wave, all the good stuff from the ‘80s, ‘90s shoegaze and grunge. Hence our EP’s name, Mash – we are all our influences all mashed up.”
Mash is four songs of balls-to-the-wall rock. Opener ‘No Disco’ is a hit, there’s no doubt about it. It brings to mind contemporary acts like Daughters or Interpol, and one can’t help but think, if Grander Things had youth on their side and some cool haircuts, people in high places might be taking a lot of notice.
2020 and the virus-that-shall-not-be-named stymied any gigging opportunities to push the record, but with the easing of restrictions, and dare we say, a return to normality, 2021 could prove a big year for the group.
“We have lots of new songs we would like to record,” Brent says, “and will hopefully play lots of gigs, we like to rock. We also have a new release coming out around March.”
Until then, we’ll all just have to make do with Mash, try not to overplay ‘No Disco’, and follow Brent’s sage advice, “Always double track the vocals and wash your hands!”