Review Summary: What Greta Van Fleet delivers us is a lost Led Zeppelin B-sides record.
Greta Van Fleet quickly rose to fame among rock fans in the past couple of years, scoring numerous no.1 hits on rock radio and getting attention from all over the globe. Why is it tho, what is so special about them? Are they pushing the rock forward? Do they flash out some of the most amazing music rock has seen in a long time? Or blow us away with their creative song craft?
None of the above ladies and gentleman, these guys have taken everything wrong, but everything what's needed to get in the popular eye. They are doing the exact opposite of what bands should do today. They are not bringing the sound of classic rock back, they are flat out copying one of the greatest bands of all time. To say that they are ripping off Zeppelin is an understatement.
Being completely honest, their first 2 EP's were not all that bad. They were still derivative and unimaginative, but potential and talent was undeniable. It still is tho, these guy can play. "Highway Tune" was a decent single, and "Black Smoke Rising" was genuinly good song, and hype for their debut was huge.
However, what they delivered us is a lost Zeppelin B-sides record. There is not a single original idea here. It's shocking, honestly, how precisely they copied their main influence. Hell, this is no longer influence since they became by-the-book-LZ. Some songs like "Age of Man" and "Brave New World" are needlessly long and get tiring after roughly 2 minutes. The lead off single "When the Curtain Falls" is one of the worst tracks here, with zero creativity in guitar work, average rhythm section and dollar store version of Robert Plant on the vocals. This is running thing on the intire project, except maybe the closer "Anthem". An awful song with wannabe poetic lyrics that culminate with truly beatiful line "The World is only what the world is made of". The drums sound gross, and the melody is a bland 3 acoustic chord strum-along.
While not to the level of John Paul Jones, the bass is honestly the best thing about this record. Drums are as mediocre rhythm keepers as they get, and I really have nothing to add about guitars and vocals. Don't get me wrong, Josh Kiszka has a good voice, that's not questionable. However, he does not do his own thing, he is just wildly obssesed with immitating Plant on every single song they ever released.
Same for those guitars. It's a shame that they don't use their full potential to do something more unique instead of... well, don't want to say cashing in since they are kids and probably don't care as much. But 3 project of exact same derivative music is too much.
Some hooks here like the already mentioned "Anthem" and "Lover, Leaver" are irritating as hell. Hell, every hook here is unmemorable at best. The songwritting is boring and does not engage at all, you just feel like zoning-out after 4 or 5 tracks, but hey, let's give it a chance and listen till the end. Forgettable riff after bland lyric, mediocre drumbeat after another makes this a chore. Oh, and as far as overall lyrics go, Josh Kiszka's writting is neither poetic or deep. It is only cringe-inducing in places and offers no substance.
I'm really not hating on Greta Van Fleet as people or musicians, nor I think they are bad at what they do. The fact is, this is a terrible album, and does only damage to already pretty silent mainstream rock. It is everything wrong with it and it just holds it back and makes us wish Zeps were still around. Some may think this is bringing the sound back, but it isn't at all. It's copy and pasted 50 years old that does not deliver in any way, shape or form.