The Growlers Announce Fall Tour Dates!


New York – The music of The Growlers is unmistakable.

Sure, you can hone in on some influences baked into the work of this California-bred band. Heck, even they’d cop to a few, like Ricky Nelson and The Clash but, once those same ”RIYL” tags have been filtered through the minds and hands and voices of this five-piece, there’s simply nothing else like it.

The Growlers took the phrase “Beach Goth” as an apt descriptor of their music. Sunburned and salty are terms that perfectly describe their distinctive melding of reverb heavy surf guitar and Bakersfield-style honky tonk with ‘80s post-punk. (Check out the Best New Bands review of 2013′s Not. Psych!)

This is especially true of Chinese Fountain, The Growlers’ fifth, full-length set to be released on September 23, 2015 via Everloving Records. The 11 songs found on it are some of the strongest that they’ve committed to tape yet; a byproduct not only of eight years in the trenches together but finely honing their gypsy folk dirges and psychedelic sea shanties to fans at close to 150 shows each year. The connection between vocalist, Brooks Nielsen, and guitarist, Matt Taylor (the principal songwriters of the group), has only grown deeper.

“The band played better than they’ve ever played,” says Nielsen. “We’ve got the process down now. There’s less screwing around to get the songs laid out and we weren’t waiting around for take after take. We knew it and we played without much time to spare.”

That confidence bleeds through every track on Chinese Fountain; with the band assured enough to layer in shades of many new influences. The loping ska beat of “Dull Boy” and “Going Gets Tuff,” the playful disco beat behind the title track, or the Teardrop Explodes-like agitation of “Good Advice,” are a few examples.

That said, the band did not leave themselves much room to second-guess anything. The five spent about three weeks writing the tracks and about half that amount of time in the studio recording them. That may sound rushed but, it’s not as if you can hear any strain on the finished product. Chinese Fountain is as rock solid and watertight as anything in The Growlers still-growing discography.

There’s evolution to be heard in Chinese Fountain as well, courtesy of some of Nielsen’s most pointed and poignant lyrics to date. The vocalist takes our obsession with the online world to task on the funky title track. When Nielsen drops the bomb that obliterates that most famous of Beatles’ claims with, “The internet is bigger than Jesus or John Lennon,” he re-contextualizes Marshall McLuhan’s, “the medium is the message” in the same breath. Nielsen urges positivity no matter the obstacles (“Going Gets Tuff”), as well as revealing a tattered heart to the world on tracks like “Rare Hearts” and “Love Test.”

“This is my chance to let it all out,” Nielsen says of these songs. “I kind of bottle things up and don’t really get emotional. But I think if I don’t open up, I’d be a really stale person.”

The Growlers’ Summer Tour Dates

06.03.15 – Taos, NM @ Taos Mesa Brewing
06.05.15 – Dallas, TX @ Trees
06.06.15 – Ozark, AR @ Wakarusa
06.08.15 – New Orleans, LA @ One Eyed Jacks
06.09.15 – Atlanta, GA @ Terminal West
06.10.15 – Asheville, NC @ New Mountain Theatre
06.11.15 – Manchester, TN @ Bonnaroo
06.12.15 – St. Louis, MO @ Old Rock House
06.13.15 – Norman, OK @ Opolis
06.18.15 – San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
06.19.15 – San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
06.20.15 – San Francisco, CA @ Great American Music Hall
07.11.15 – Ottawa, ON @ Ottawa Blues Festival

The Growlers’ Fall Tour Dates

09.11.15 – Las Vegas, NV @ Bunkhouse
09.12.15 – Las Vegas, NV @ Bunkhouse
09.16.15 – Portland, OR @ Wonder Ballroom
09.17.15 – Eugene, OR @ Cozmic
09.18.15 – Arcata, CA @ The Depot
09.19.15 – Sacramento, CA @ TBD Festival
09.26.15 – Boulder, CO @ Fox Theatre
09.27.15 – Lawrence, KS @ Bottleneck
09.29.15 – Milwaukee, WI @ Turner Hall
9.30.15 – Chicago, IL @ Metro
10.01.15 – Ann Arbor, MI @ Blind Pig
10.02.15 – Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern
10.03.15 – Toronto, ON @ Horseshoe Tavern
10.04.15 – Ithaca, NY @ The Haunt
10.05.15 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer
10.07.15 – Boston, MA @ Sinclair
10.08.15 – NYC, NY @ Irving Plaza
10.09.15 – NYC, NY @ Irving Plaza
10.10.15 – Washington D.C @ 930 Club
10.11.15 – Chapel Hill, NC 2 Cats Cradle
10.12.15 – Nashville, TN @ Exit In

Keep up with The Growlers through their official website and these social media platforms:

Twitter (@thegrowlers)

Photo credit: Pam Littky