Gravity Won’t Get You High – The Grates

2006 –Dew Process

Alternative/ Pop/ Rock

Gravity Won’t Get You High, the debut album from Brisbane pop-rockers The Grates, is a nicely bouncy little piece of work that melds indie-rock and pop sensibilities into a nicely comfortable record.

The beats get your soul jumping up and down and the melodies are incredibly catchy, but really there’s nothing particularly special here. Tracks like Lies Are Much More Fun and Trampoline are perfectly crafted to catch that indie-pop crowd with its cutesy lyrics and even cutesier delivery and this is the case for most of the other songs. I guess there is just a sense of lack of originality and lack of commitment that irks me on this record. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing really bad here; it’s just that there’s something in it that comes across as a bit too calculated.

There are some really quite catchy songs on here, however, like 19 20 20 which just gets stuck in the listeners head for hours or days and Howl which has a welcome garage rock base beneath its over-production. Unfortunately though, there are just as many songs which really don’t quite cut it, such as Rock Boys which is quite simply a bit boring, Feels Like Pain which sounds like a tired Courtney Love trying to relive here glory days, and Nothing Sir which, in all honesty, is just annoying nonsense.

I think, however, that despite this record’s propensity for calculated ‘hit’ making and the problems of its over-production there are a couple of tracks that really let the band’s true originality shine through their well-worn indie-pop exterior. The quirky operatic nursery-rhyme of Won’t Survive and the grunge-folk of Sukkafish are really quite nice and their individuality is welcome amongst the rather predictable rest of the album. Hearing these stand-out tracks makes me think that The Grates, as a band, might have potential to be something very special, but, as they seem to form the minority of the album, I’m not holding out a great deal of hope.

I guess that my verdict is that The Grates’ Gravity Won’t Get You High is thoroughly okay. It’s exactly the kind of thing that usually catches my interest and I feel kind of like I should like it, but, when it comes down to it, I really just don’t. Nothing’s particularly awful of annoying, but nothing’s really very good either. I wouldn’t complain if it came up at a party, but I wouldn’t recommend rushing out to buy it either.

RATING: ***/5



Here is one of the better songs from the 2006 album ‘Gravity Won’t Get You High’


Unfortunately the film clip is just as annoyingly cutesy as the album.



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