“Stop the bus and turn the radio up high!” wails Grace Potter on the second track of the band’s third full length album titled This is Somewhere. This is exactly what you’ll want to do when you hear this song playing in whatever your version of a bus is. Grace Potter & The Nocturnals hail from Waitsfield, Vermont and are lead by none other than the multi-talented and soon to be legendary Grace Potter. You’ll probably hear people refer to Potter as “hot”, “sexy” or even “sultry”. She is, of course, all of those things but is by no means deterred by her crowd banter as she’s found ways to play to the various marriage proposals barked from audiences. You might hear something like this exchange published in Harp Magazine where a male fan screamed that he wanted to have Grace’s babies: “if that were biologically possible, I’d be totally down. Meet me backstage and we’ll talk logistics,” exclaimed Potter. But don’t make the mistake of checking out this band on those superficial characteristics. Its the vocal chops, howling Hammond keystrokes and screaming guitar of Grace Potter that weaken knees and leave folks begging for more. You also shouldn’t check out this band just for the lead singer. Joining her are Scott Tournet (lead guitar), Bryan Dondero (bass guitar) and Matt Burr (drums) all talented musicians on their own merits. On equal par of extroversion as Potter is Tournet who more commonly speaks through the bending strings of his guitar with the acoustic vocabulary of a classic rock Shakespeare. Tournet is to the Nocturnals what Pete Townsend is to The Who, a perfect complement to the voice of the band as well as a bleeding fingers guitarist. In the same way that Tournet complements Potter, the remaining members Dondero and Burr balance out the band like U2’s Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen do Bono and Edge, quietly but powerfully. Their onstage chemistry and humble desire to please fans combine in a way that should offer them successes for many years to come.
This is Somewhere is notably their most mature and freespirited recording to date. You’ll find comfort and confidence in the songwriting and a true urge to let loose and rock out. From the caffeinated “Stop the Bus” to the tender “Falling or Flying” this album is perfectly produced and orchestrated with a full range of rockin’ tunes and ballads. A blend of classic rock sensibilities, soul drenched vocals and introspective lyrics, This is Somewhere will certainly find its way onto many top indie charts this year. If you’re new to Grace Potter & The Noturnals you may want to start with this album and work yourself back through their work in reverse chronological order. You’ll see how they’ve grown from record to record and have remained true to who they are.
Check out this live video featuring track one “Ah Mary”:
Special Offer! Pre-Order the new CD, This Is Somewhere by Grace Potter & The Nocturnals and get a limited* autographed CD Booklet with purchase!”
This is Somewhere is due in stores on August 7, 2007.
Photo credit: JAMES MINCHIN
About the author: Washington, D.C. area web designer by day. Music is my muse. I host Twangville‘s weekly Readers‘ Pick.