Grandaddy

Record Review

Phases and Stages

Grandaddy

Sumday (V2) Grandaddy's third full-length is the band's Dark Side of the Moon, a musical snapshot of postmodern existence in which things are often not what they seem. Sumday kicks off with the explosive "Now It's On," seguing into the simultaneously wistful and sly "I'm on Standby," in which the narrator blames his dysfunction on being a malfunctioning machine. While such a topic is positively Radiohead in its despair, singer Jason Lytle makes it a joke, playing with the internal rhyme when he sings "out of order, sort of." The hijinks continue with "The Go in the Go-For-It" poking fun at the ambitious types our overworking society has produced, culminating in a musical panic attack a few tracks later on "Lost on Yer Merry Way." The story's protagonist, it seems, has embraced his alienation from the workaday world, embarking on a Kerouacian journey that goes south. A subtle tempo change late in the track changes the song's tenor remarkably; what was an easygoing song is suddenly shot through with anxiety, then uneasy surrender. The hero lets go, freeing himself from the rat race, but wonders if he'll survive such a risky move. The disc wraps with the psychedelia the NorCal-based band is known for, settling sweetly into dreamy melancholia. Listeners are left to eavesdrop on the hero as he asks, "What have I become?" on the album's last track, "The Final Push to the Sum." Ultimately, he regrets bucking the system and the sum of his -- and our -- experience is sadder than its parts.

****

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More Music Reviews
Review: Holy Wave, <i>Five of Cups</i>
Review: Holy Wave, Five of Cups
Five of Cups (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Sept. 1, 2023

Review: The Bright Light Social Hour, <i>Emergency Leisure</i>
Review: The Bright Light Social Hour, Emergency Leisure
Emergency Leisure (Record Review)

Raoul Hernandez, Aug. 4, 2023

More by Melanie Haupt
Restaurant Review: Mexta
Restaurant Review: Mexta
Mexta wants to be Austin’s new upscale Mexican dining destination

July 5, 2024

Restaurant Review: Bambino
Restaurant Review: Bambino
New Eastside pizza joint from L’Oca d’Oro owners has something to say

June 7, 2024

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle