Album Review: Gran Pavo Real by Great Peacock
Americana at its finest
Americana is a genre that is a new taste for me. I’m still in the process of rolling its flavors over my tongue, learning to distinguish the subtleties, the high notes, the overall sound that distinguishes itself. That being said, I’ve fallen head over dusty heels for Americana favorites like Valerie June, Rhiannon Golden, and Alabama Shakes as I’ve added new artists to my menu.
Thus when I was asked to check out the band Great Peacock I didn’t immediately back away from the table. Instead I was intrigued and ran over to YouTube to take a listen. My first gut reaction off the first track I heard, “Take Me To The Mountain“?” Look at them harmonies! Lead singer and guitarist Andrew Nelson and guitarist Blount Floyd blend well vocally and are a joy to listen to together.
The great thing about Americana is that it pulls from various genres. It’s said best by Nelson himself: “A peacock has so many colors, and that’s what we want our sound to be like. It’s clearly rock ‘n roll. It’s clearly country. It’s clearly folk. There’s definitely blues and elements of R&B in there, too.”
Now it definitely leans toward country, but don’t let that scare you off. Their recently released sophomore album (March 2018), Gran Pavo Real (Spanish for Great Peacock), has tracks that shine regardless of your preference. There’s the aching wail of heartbreak in “Begging To Stay,” and the classic country-rock vibe you get from “Hideaway,” a song that is great summer driving theme music. With a helping hand from My Morning Jacket bassist Tom Blakenship, this album rides the line between genres in an effortless way. If doesn’t feel contrived or gimmicky. More like buddies having a jam session that just happened to produce a colorful collection of songs that reach across the board. My favorite of the 10-track delight is “Miss You Honey.” It’s guitar laden and sweet, something you can easily hear getting radio airplay. Might I suggest while you’re at it, you go back and take a listen to their debut album, Making Ghosts, which also has some songs worth adding to your playlist. Just don’t let the summer end without purchasing your own copy of Gran Pavo Real.