The Growlers are a part of the California coastline garage band movement that’s made many people pleased with its dreamy imagery and matched with a distinctly 60s throwback style. Their latest offering is a sample of demos called Beach Goth, which just so happens to be the style of music the band prefers to be referred to as. Some of their songs are often sung in a way that would make most people think of the ramblings of a beach-going drunkard who’s had far too much sun. This album was made as a kind of preview of what’s to be expected on the band’s next album, Hung At Heart, due out early next year. So most of what we hear on these demo tracks is just what you might expect from a demo; it’s short, rough and in some instances particularly memorable.
Sit On A Slug, features a lot of organ at its heart and very faint background percussion, this sets the tone for this track and it makes it one that stands out as one of the demo’s best. It’s No Use is one of those demo tracks that reminds you of what the kernel of a great song really is; well executed, memorable and just begging to be fleshed out. One Million Lovers is sung with a distinctly laidback feel that The Growlers seem to be achieving with ease throughout this demo album. The rough gain that permeates this particular song provides a sense that the band is almost playing under water or that you as the listener are hearing the band perform a few apartments over from your own. It is a common effect of low tech recording sessions but in the case of The Growlers it works very well with the band’s overall style. In fact, Beach Goth is reminiscent of another demo which was rereleased by Lou Barlow earlier this year and both of them were released on cassette tape. So dust that Walkman off and get listening.
The Growlers have certain charm to their style of music that seems almost unintentional, which makes it all the more charming.