It's been said - "Never go into business with family".
Mixing family with a business endeavor can oftentimes prove volatile and destructive to the family dynamic. So with that line of reasoning imagine the potential for conflict when working in a musical group made up of three married couples.
Glowfriends are just such a business venture - three married couples - dispelling the notion that success and harmony can't co-exist in a family/business. If anything, the musical partnership has bonded the group into an extended family.
Glowfriends are comprised of the Zimonts, April (vocals, tambourine) and Adam (guitar, backing vocals), Jean (vibes, glockenspiel) and JW Hendrix (drums, percussion), and Holly Klutts-Morris (bass, vibes, vocals) and her husband Mark Andrew Morris (vocals, guitar, organ).
Family has actually been the overlying theme of the band since it's inception, when brother and sister Mark and Holly Morris started as a duo. Over time the duo expanded into the six piece group it has become.
In the ensuing years the band has recorded a number of EP's and LPs' beginning with the 8 song EP "The Bridge Over River Qua" (2007), the full length album "A Farewell To Fair-Weather" (2007), the album "To Have And To Hold" (2009), another 8 song EP "Eyelash" (2010), the Limited Edition "Canyons Of Static Split" (2011), and "All Things Made New" (2012).
The band just released "Gather Us Together" on March 21, 2014.
I'll be the first to admit that the music of Glowfriends is not in my wheelhouse. My limited expertise as a reviewer is in the progressive rock genre, whereas the music of Glowfriends is geared towards the alternative market. But even though alternative music is not my preferred genre, I still have enough of an ear to distinguish good music from bad. And "All Things Made New" is a very appealing collection of tunes that even an old progger like myself can enjoy as a change of pace.
The songs combine elements of Dreampop, Shoegaze, folk, and alternative grunge.
The 12 tunes are propelled by a simplistic yet driving beat. None of the complex polyrhythmic time signatures I'm accustom to hearing when reviewing a progressive rock album. Yet this scaled down simplicity and easily accessible poppy melodies make this a highly enjoyable listening experience.
The ethereal and seductive vocals provide a stark contrast to the crunchy distorted guitar work. And the use of percussion instruments like vibes and glockenspiel add a unique haunting texture to the tunes.
The music of the Glowfriends is comparable to groups like Ride, Jupiter Sun, My Bloody Valentine. Nick Drake, Nico, and Trembling Blue Stars.
After a constant barrage of hyper-kinetic progressive metal, dissonant avant-garde, and the latest sprawling 25 minute prog/rock epic I found the Glowfirend's CD "All Things Made New" a nice change of pace and a highly enjoyable collection of catchy hook laden melodies.
Reviewed by Joseph Shingler on March 30th, 2014