A wonderful, spacious low-fi intro to Grasshopper kicks of this EP from Greg Roensch. It’s a sweetly pretty and wistful piece, with Greg’s vocal front and centre, and then a stereo pair of gentle female vocals from Carly Bond providing warming support. Gently funking keyboard and plaintive saxophone waft through the track with some extra atmosphere being conjured by judicious use of the ride cymbal.
The vocals are careworn and careful, and the organ and drum kit move tentatively around them in a unique, almost psychedelic swirl of tender placement.
Up next is the unlikely-titled Don’t Forget to Pack Your Hand Grenade! Greg uses a spoken word delivery for this track, while backing vocals pick out the melody, and synths become more heavily featured. ‘Boom, boom, boom / It’s the golden age of doom,’ goes the hook. I think it’s a rumination on the mundanity of the cycles and repetition of modern life, using the routines that you need to go through to be able to disembark an airport as a metaphor for this.
Tell It Like It Is features a lead vocal sung in unison with Carly Bond. It works well, becoming a familiar and comforting technique as the unpacking of the EP progresses. Interesting instrumentation, featuring plenty of organ and piano, works in harmony with synths – adding an extra, slightly other-worldly dimension to the sound.
Featuring sweet ‘cello, the EP concludes with Celluloid Dream. Roensch has selected these tracks from an album called What’s in the Meaning of That Cloud in the Sky? They work well here and give a fascinating overview of what the album might contain.
Each song creates a gentle and satisfyingly human take on Roensch’s subject matter, which is ruminative and delicate and a little bit trippy. It’s distinct and idiosyncratic, and I dig it for that.
Check out the EP via Bandcamp.