Major Player’s first EP, Grift & Gum, is pop music gone moody and introspective.
The album began as an experiment in hip-hop beat-making between Jeffrey York (Animal Pants) and Liz Strodel (The Delinquents, The Goonies), and each track began as a 4-5 second sample, giving the songs a catchy immediacy that plays nicely against their pensive lyrics.
The word “grift” means a “petty swindle”—a hoax, a hustle—and this EP explores the idea of trickery through songs about disappearance and shadowy love. On “Hailey,” York mourns the departure of some haunted ghost-girl who’s left him alone with “the same old story/drawn-out and boring.” The lover is present in “Hard From Now On,” but the timeline is slippery and so the love is not to be trusted: “Too long from now on/I found you, love.” Here’s one final trick: the songs take their arc from rhythm, repetition, and hypnotic groove, as opposed to linear unfolding of harmonic ideas. Stay alert, or this band will get its hooks in you.
Erase each line out of me!
They are so broken down (now) by lame and numb.
With each line that's been erased,
there's a new day that will come along to drift from.
For all I know my dreams have come.
A pile now outgrown with gum.
Why hold when none still grow?
In the sunshine will the morning meet the cold,
with just the wavelength to make all our grasses grow?
I lay down my bed of day.
Raise all my better days.
Now we're old and made anew.
The season we drift through
that have now way to youth.
And how lazy we blaze through all those better days,
when it seemed they'd go
on and on,
from out of things that come.
So far away then from the rule and the hum.
On and on.
The grift within us then.
With all the games we play
to crawl in someone's bed
I laid down by better days.
Reach out for better days.
In the sunshine
well hello there, meet the old.
Its just a new day where we're brought into our own.
On we go.
Fear within us that,
if all we came to has evolved into our best,
why live out these better days,
without our better days?
from Volume Three Sampler,
track released December 11, 2015
Jeffrey York – Lead Vocals, Guitar, Bass, Mellotron & Synthesizer
Elizabeth Strodel – Drums, Backing Vocals & Percussion
Nick Mazzeo – Hammond Organ & Wurlitzer Electric Piano
Produced by Jeffrey York & Andrew Greacen
Recorded by Andrew Greacen at More Sound Studio, Syracuse NY
Additional Recording at 139 Bassett St. by Jeffrey York
Mixed & Mastered by Jason Randal at More Sound Studio
Cover photo by Phil McAndrew
Layout and Design by Sarah Howell
Focusing on deliberate efforts of sincere music/art, ears&eyes was born within a vibe of community and creativity in
Chicago, after its conception in New Orleans with branches spreading to New York, Bay Area and Buenos Aires. We're a family, of sorts, releasing amazing jazz-type and rock music, with hints of folk, noise, chamber, free and soul....more