In my quest to find indie and local bands to feature on my blog, I turned to Facebook for assistance. Soon enough, I uncovered a handful of bands. However, I didn’t know where to start. Smaller bands don’t always have albums to review. Sometimes, if they do have albums they’re not recorded well, so it’s harder to hear the quality of the music.
Then, one day at work I heard about Big Donut. What a comical name, I thought. However, I looked them up that night and quickly added them to my list of bands to review and rank.
A Little Background
Big Donut doesn’t have a label or record deal, yet. However, they are just as hardworking as any “legit” band that’s signed. After speaking with a friend of the band members, I know they work hard to hone their craft. They stay up late jamming and rocking their house, so they can master a solo or figure out a complex drum fill. According to their Facebook page, they have been shows more regularly. In other words: they are growing more popular. And, given the frequency of new albums on their bandcamp page, they seem to always be working toward releasing new material.
Mr. Grizzly Cream was Big Donut’s first record. It was released a little over three years ago in June of 2015 and can be found here, on their bandcamp website, as well as on their Spotify page.
I found the feel of the record is infective and calming. It is reminiscent of The Doors and The Eagles. The guitar work often soars above the lyrics, painting the tune with relaxing notions. Other times, the guitar flies off the rails in a gloriously chaotic riff. Slick solos dot the album, allowing the guitarist a moment to show off his abilities.
Some of the lyrics can be dorky and even funny. Some people might find this distracting, but I choose to look at this differently. From the first time I listened to them, I found their lyrics quirky and charming. It adds to the “garage rock” feel the band employs at times. While some of the lyrics are dorky, the disc is still loaded with great songs. Some songs, like “Reruns”, tell a story. I always find it delightful when a band tells a story with their music, rather than just ramble about something for a few minutes. I think this showcases the lyricist’s maturity and ability to craft a narrative.
Songs Worth Investigating
My favorite two tracks are “Close to Me” and “Reruns”. I enjoy the subject matter of “Close to Me”. It has an existential message wrapped in a slow rock package with a tinge of the band’s dorky swagger. “Reruns” tells a story about someone who daydreams about TV and dislikes their job. This is something we can all relate to doing at times. This tale is woven together with neat little riffs and features a soaring break down.
The final track on the record is also very interesting. “Alaska” starts with the vocalist strumming an acoustic guitar. It has strong singer-song-writer vibe before the band jumps in and helps tell the story about a guy that moves to Alaska to get away, but ends of finding more of the stuff he tried to run away from.
In the End
If you like “local bands” and undiscovered groups, I would recommend checking them out. Their music is very accessible. Plus, they have a lot of original material online. They have songs on YouTube, Spotify and bandcamp. And if you’re in the neighborhood, drop by and check out one of their shows.