The Growlers

The Growlers

 Costa Mesa, California, USA

"Dark, surf-tinged guitar hooks and near circus-like stage presence." - Santa Barbara Independent


"Dark, surf-tinged guitar hooks and near circus-like stage presence. While frontman Brooks Nielsen sashayed freely about, an auxiliary drummer in an oversized coolie hat sat stationary with a small bongo. During more rollicking tracks, the band found themselves flanked by legions of shimmying ladies—the ultimate testament to sonic success."
-- Santa Barbara Independent

"The Growlers play party music that's shot through with an undertone of melancholy. It's as if their sepia-tinted rock songs come equipped with both the drunken cheeriness and the nauseating hangover. They know how to rollick like champs, but they can also creep along with a vaguely Eastern European worldweariness that's endearing. They may claim Ol' Dirty Bastard and Lee "Scratch" Perry as influences on their MySpace page (wigga, please), but the Growlers actually sound more like Man Man if they were fixated on pre-psych rock that's too sophisticated to be considered "garage." This nebulous quality makes the Growlers one of the most interesting bands working in the region... [T]hese songs exude a casual, understated cool, marked by winding, mesmerizing, spangly guitars and Brooks Nielsen's riveting, woebegone vocals. Even 38-second scraps bear close listening." -- OC Weekly

"Distorted guitars, reverbed vocals, and homemade recordings that sound like they were made in 1965." -- Foam

Everloving Records' fall release of The Growlers Are You In Or Out? compiles 18 tracks mostly taken from their self-released Couple series - eight handmade CDR releases of varying length. The release of each Couple came accompanied by a raging party and live performance at the band's Costa Mesa, CA warehouse/recording studio/bachelor pad.
The recordings aren't pristine, but they map an upward trajectory of a band learning their way around their gear. The Growlers recently supported Devendra Banhart on a run of West Coast dates and headlined the Monday night residency at L.A.'s Echo in August 2009. They have also played with The Entrance Band and The Bravery.
Rather than try to describe the sound of The Growlers much further on our own, we defer to their buddy Al Knost, pro-surfer and leader of Japanese Motors.

By Alex Knost of Japanese Motors
The Growlers are a rock and pop group formed in Long Beach, California in 2006 who are yet to become one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed bands in the history of popular music. During their years of stardom yet to come, the band consists of Brooks Nielsen (vocals), Scott Montoya (bass guitar, vocals), Matt Taylor (lead guitar, vocals) and Brian “don’t surf” Stewart (drums, vocals). They were managed by their own alter-ego Epstein until his death in 2009.

Although their initial musical style was rooted in 1960s Rock and Roll and Skiffle the group works with different musical genres, ranging from ice flossing hip hop to psychedelic rock. Their clothes, style and statements have made them trendsetters. While their growing social awareness saw their influence extend into the social and cultural revolutions. During the release of their first album and their ongoing singles releases, they have experimented with recording techniques that have the ability to bend sound in ways only drugs can. By now this “bent sound” has been perfected in their live act that some onlookers call “groovy” and or “sick.”

The groovy unexcelled value in Lo fidelity sound is their stock and trade. They are the result of a combination of skilled modern engineering techniques and the very finest outdated recording and amplified equipment. The Growlers sound is best exemplified through Nielsen’s cryptic lyrics and the relationship it has with Matt Taylor. As if the two are each other’s half. Though they complete each other, they compel and challenge one another in ways only the frequent Growler fan can truly understand. Perhaps it is what The Growler fan feels while taking part in the drug wave of bent sound.


Are You In Or Are You Out? CD/Vinyl