Grinning Souls - "Capture"
Grinning Souls is the NEW band featuring Nick Van Eede, formerly of the Cutting Crew.
Nick Van Eede: Vocals, acoustic guitars, keyboards
Aaron Collier: Piano, synths, organ
Adam Dowling: Drums, loops
Asif Illyas: Principal guitar, string arrangements
Shehab Illyas: Bass guitar
Brian Marshall: Guitars, voice of weatherman
Julian Marentette: Percussion
Recorded during 2003 & 2004 in Canada and England
Producers: Nick Van Eede & Terry Brown
Executive Producer: Julian Marentette
1) Shot of Democracy -
Beginning with a teasing sample of the Grinning Souls title track, this song launches the album.
It is the first new music we've heard from Nick Van Eede in... well 10 years! And it sounds great!
Drums and bass kick in before Nick's recognizable vocals begin.
I'm still trying to figure out what this song is about, but Cutting Crew fans may recognize the
bit about "A million Christian soldiers" (think Broadcast and becoming 'a Christian soldier on my
late late show') :)
Favorite part: The "holy rest" in the bridge when Nick breathes that "it's time to come home".
2) Hard on You -
This song is clever. Here the singer is essentially talking about how it's tough to be with
someone else and quietly makes his case. The message "I'm sorry too if it's hard on you" is
reinforced with a pounding soundtrack to emphasize the point.
Favorite part: The main guitar line that rings through the song and the pretty piano work.
3) Apparent Depth -
The whooshing keyboard sound reminds one of sonar looking for that elusive ship deep under the
water. An appropriate metaphor for a song looking for an 'apparent depth'. Listen for the string
section in the middle, and the haunting guitar shimmering across the surface at the tail end.
Favorite part: The fact that this song was co-written with Kevin Macmichael.
4) No Problem Child -
Acoustic guitar appears clearly for the first time and backs a lyric telling the listener that
regardless of her deeds "it's no problem child". I could listen to this song over and over, it
has so many tasty nuances in it. Thankfully the pleasure lasts for over six minutes.
Favorite part: The acoustic guitar lick, the introduction of the bass before the chorus, the
strings and lines like "we laughed at the promise of summer".
5) Silhouette -
Without a doubt, this song is a tribute to Nick's best friend and bandmate Kevin Macmichael.
The most amazing part about this song is its simplicity - the melody from a child's rhyme
brings powerful emotions about the loss of a best friend head on - straight to your heart.
Favorite part: The guitar note that rises then descends, reminds us of good memories and loss.
6) Boomerang -
We're approaching half-way through the album, and things have been pretty serious up to this
point. Now a blast of fresh air to lighten things up, that you know from the start is going to be
Favorite part: The autobiographical lyric "move up to Canada and form me a band!"
7) Grinning Souls -
On the surface this is an anthem to island living and warmer climes and you'd swear it feels like
the waves are lapping at your feet. But underneath it's a tale of finding yourself and
redemption. How the singer has remembered important things forgotten and discovered new strength.
Another album highlight here, no doubt.
Favorite part: The wave that rises underneath "you believed in me" and carries you higher.
8) Left of Heaven -
Beautiful keys form the basis of this song before the rest of the band join us. There are
relatively few words here and we're just learning about the man who is the subject of the song
before nothing more is told. But it's alright, the instrumental fills in the blanks instead.
Favorite part: The keys and the guitars behind the "little left of heaven" phrases.
9) Understudies -
Time to break the calm and crank things up a notch again. The singer seems to know what it's like
to prepare for the starring role and never see the spotlight. Or is he encouraging you to keep
fighting and find your own place? Plenty of cymbals crashing and vocal energy here!
Favorite part: The acoustic guitar break and upbeat tempo throughout.
10) GetupandGetoverit -
It's hard to describe what this song sounds like but it's easy to imagine everyone joining in on
the chorus when this is performed live. You'll have to listen carefully to pick up on all the
funny background sounds and cameo appearances on this track.
Favorite part: The absolute chaos that takes over the whole ending of the song.
11) Capture -
Likely the last song recorded for the album, the title track brings us back to reflection. It
ends as soon as it began, with a haunting choir-like Italian phrasing.
Favorite part: The distant and distorted vocals that come from nowhere to deliver a message.
12) Lauren's Theme -
The closing track is a gorgeous instrumental, with only a keyboard providing a symphony-sized
sound. You can almost hear previous bits of Cutting Crew themes in here, but it's more than that.
It's pretty and it's haunting and it's very easy to lose your way while listening, because so
many emotions are expressed. It's the soundtrack to a movie we've never seen.
Favorite part: The polyphonic sounds that make your spirit rise and descend.
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