Strawberry Girls
American Graffiti


4.0
excellent

Review

by ification CONTRIBUTOR (72 Reviews)
November 18th, 2015 | 96 replies


Release Date: 11/13/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Always in season...

Throughout American Graffiti’s runtime, one may be inclined to say that Strawberry Girls have matured. In comparison to French Ghetto, the songs are tighter, the production crisper, and their trademark groove, if anything, is stronger than ever. However, that would imply that the band that made French Ghetto was somehow less mature than the band now, which is simply untrue. From their inception, Strawberry Girls have displayed an amazing level of finesse with their songwriting that normally takes years to develop, striking a perfect balance between their trademark aggressive groove-laden sound and a progressive edge that keeps each song fresh. So what then could you call the sound found American Graffiti if not a maturation? How about an expansion?

One notable thing about Strawberry Girls, albeit a thing that makes them so great, is that it’d be hard to call any one member of the band a virtuoso of their instrument. Sure, Zachary Garren’s penchant for creating some downright infectious riffs and licks are on full display in songs like “Spanish Bay” and “Violent Night”. Drummer Ben Rosett shows remarkable range from the slower paced “Egypt” to the furious “Antiquation”. Hell, bassist Ian Jennings pretty much runs “Egypt”, an album highlight, and steals the show with the outro of “Harpy 1975”, but as skillful as the band is technically, none of their performances would exactly win any awards. What makes American Graffiti so compelling is the way the band seemed to have been in each other’s minds while writing the album. The compositions never feel lacking, with every note and rhythm being structured and executed by the band in the best possible ways. It’s this cohesive breed of songwriting that allows every member of the band to shine which in turn allows their special brand of funky groove to permeate every corner of American Graffiti.

And make no mistake, it’s the groove that will keep listeners returning to American Graffiti months, even years down the road. Strawberry Girls have crafted their own tangy concoction of it and slathered it all over these songs. The aforementioned “Egypt”, although darker in tone and (just a tad) slower in pace than much of American Graffiti, showcases everything that’s right about Strawberry Girls, allowing the listener to really take in the whole song without the speed of much of the rest of the album. Much like “Egypt”, American Graffiti utilizes some nifty production and clever songwriting to give each song a personality. “Spanish Bay” conjures images of a waterfront shanty town starting a busy day, while in stark contrast the band cranks up the distortion and shows listeners some surprising edge with “Antiquation”.

American Graffiti is a special album. It showcases a unique brand of relentlessly catchy groove which has been largely untapped by musicians in today’s scene. The diversity among the songs and terrific songwriting lend to a feeling of completeness for the album, not leaving the listener wishing more could have been done when it’s over. However, perhaps the greatest aspect of this album is the fun factor. One listen to the nod to Stevie Wonder’s “Isn’t She Lovely” in “Simon Vandetta”, and it’s easy to imagine how much fun the guys had recording American Graffiti. And if you ain’t having fun making your music, what are you doing?



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user ratings (162)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Been a very long time since I wrote a review so any feedback is as usual welcome. I haven't had this much fun with an album in quite a long time. And look at that a whole Strawberry Girls review without mentioning Dance Gavin Dance. It was hard but I did it.

Digging: Greeley Estates - Calling All The Hopeless

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

And of course: https://tragicherorecords.bandcamp.com/album/american-graffiti

LordePots
November 18th 2015


37225 Comments


Italian Ghosts was so good so gonna check

Digging: Ambassadeurs - Patterns

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I'd give you a rec if i wasn't completely shocked you'd even heard of this band.

LordePots
November 18th 2015


37225 Comments


why on earth would you be shocked id heard of them

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

cuz i don't pay close attention to people on this site very much. hope you like though it doesn't sound very much like italian ghosts from what I remember of it.

LordePots
November 18th 2015


37225 Comments


nothing to do with paying attention to people on this site, what did u expect, no one ever heard of Strawberry Girls but you? French Ghetto has 106 ratings on here, which is actually a tonne for this sites standards for anything that isnt super obvious

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

yes lorde I know. just didn't think you'd heard of them much less actually listened to them.

LordePots
November 18th 2015


37225 Comments


just Italian Ghosts and I really loved it for a while.

LordePots
November 18th 2015


37225 Comments


Always meant to check out French Ghetto and never got around to it for some reason

Tyler.
November 18th 2015


12430 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Band has some legimate jams gonna czech

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this album jams non fuking stop so you should enjoy if you enjoy jams

OwMySnauze
November 18th 2015


1662 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Great write up Calc. Enjoyed the track Simon Vandetta, especially because of that My Boo cameo. Old school r&b right there.

Wolfhorde
November 18th 2015


15246 Comments


Not sure I dig the guest vox on here as much as on French Ghetto but it still jams quite a bit. Will need more spins, though.

ShitsofRain
November 18th 2015


7940 Comments


the artwork looks so poor why

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

"especially because of that My Boo cameo. "



funny how people are saying it's My Boo and I think it's stevie wonder

Tyler.
November 18th 2015


12430 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah this jams

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 18th 2015


15643 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

the ending to Harby is just too much groove, i've almost crashed listening to that shit.

Tyler.
November 18th 2015


12430 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Makes me want to play guitar really bad

XingKing
November 18th 2015


12158 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The lack of Kathleen Delano on any of these tracks seriously rustles my jimmies, but this is easily in my top three of the year



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