SXSW 2016 Boston & Beyond Spotlight: Great Grandpa twist and turn into our hearts

Welcome to the latest in a week-long series of spotlights profiling the bands and artists performing at the 2016 Boston & Beyond party at SXSW, a collaborative effort between Berklee College of Music and Vanyaland. Our third annual event — and Berklee’s 11th SXSW party overall — goes down Thursday, March 17 at Austin’s Brush Square Park, located at 409 East 5th St., next to the Convention Center. The party is co-presented by Berklee Alumni, The Red Room @ Cafe 939, and Heavy Rotation Records, and is all ages and open to SXSW badge holders. Get on the list without charge by RSVPing via EventBrite. Additional info and music from each of the performing bands and artists can be found here.

Great Grandpa, 4:45 p.m. set time

When you’re a kid, you immediately like your great-grandfather. He’s so old and goofy! He can remove his teeth! He knew Abe Lincoln! Similarly, it took about 12 seconds of hearing incredible 2015 EP Can Opener for us to fall in love with Great Grandpa, the Seattle guitar rock band who closes things out at this year’s Boston & Beyond. The immediate impact is so real: The EP’s opening track is about loving Cheetos and has a sound that falls somewhere between the twisting guitar heaviness of Speedy Ortiz and the throwback indie rock of Pavement and the Pixies. Sign us the fuck up.

But we’re not alone. Writes Nada Mucho after Great Grandpa shared the stage recently with Palehound out in the great Pacific Northwest: “Great Grandpa took the stage next and proceeded to OWN the audience… I have a not-so-secret fondness for any band that’s technically proficient but unafraid to be sloppy because it’s waaaaay more fun, and this group secured a place in my heart almost immediately… As soon as I heard that first ragged guitar tone, followed by that seemingly lazy, caustically pointed, and incredibly talented female vocal kick in, I was transported back to my hazy adolescence. This band was so much fun.”

Last fall, Great Grandpa dropped a video for “Mostly Here”, and Stereogum was all over it. “The Seattle band has a knack for making sure everything slides into place with just the right amount of irregular edges, and they prove how well of a handle they have on that balance time and time again throughout their debut,” the ‘Gum writes. “They’re a band that shines just as brightly in individual moments as they do over the course of a whole song.”

Dive into a bunch of those songs below, and prepare to sit on the proverbial lap of this Great Grandpa without any fear of lingering weirdness.

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