Jump to content

GRANDADDY: The little band from Modesto!


Recommended Posts

In the wake of Radiohead, there were many bands who took inspiration from the Oxfordshire lads. Flaming Lips, Wilco, Mercury Rev, the Doves, Muse, Coldplay, Elbow, Travis, and countless others, either began or changed their sound towards a more radiohead-vibe after "The Bends" and especially "OK Computer" turned the music world on its ear.

One of the better ones was Grandaddy, from the unlikely and tiny environs of Modesto, California. Sadly, they were never really successful, and after 4 albums and countless EP's and singles later, Jason Lytle decided to end the band in 2006 and go solo and now he's in a band called Admiral Radley.

Of the four Grandaddy albums, 2000's "The Sophtware Slump" (which references technology and the line about a band's difficult second album, aka "sophomore slump"), is my favourite. I still remember when I first heard a song from it...June 2000: I was listening to KXLU 88.9 FM, a college radio station that broadcasts from Loyola Marymount University, California, on my way to work, and they were playing this amazing song that had me mesmerized. After the set was over and the radio dj identified the songs, I found out the song was "He’s Simple, He’s Dumb, He’s The Pilot", and it was from the new Grandaddy album, "The Sophtware Slump". After work I immediately went to the Tower Records in Santa Monica and bought a copy.

I fell in love with the record immediately. Similar to "OK Computer" in its themes of man and his uneasy relationship with technology, and how quick we are to dispose of something as soon as a new gadget arrives, there is a kind of warmth to the some of the songs that "OK Computer" lacks. To me the heart and soul of the record is JED, or Jeddy, a robot built and then discarded after his builders lose interest in him, and then the robot turns to alcohol in his loneliness before finally he just stops altogether, broken down and alone. Here's two of the songs relating Jed's story:

And one of the greatest music videos I've ever seen...a perfect melding of visuals to music...using a vintage 1979 Apple computer!

It is one of the great records of the decade...and one I turn to(along with its sister EP "Through a Frosty Plate Glass" released in 2001) often.

Anyway, this year news came out about a Grandaddy reissue program and the Deluxe 2-cd edition of "The Sophtware Slump" was released this week on iTunes and Europe, which includes the album, plus all the relevant B-sides and EP tracks and demos. Unfortunately at the moment, the actual CD package is not being released in the U.S., which means you have to get an import version. Here's the news that appeared on Grandaddy's website the other day:


August 23rd, 2011

The Sophtware Slump Deluxe Edition

Just over 11 years after its original release, we are again celebrating The Sophtware Slump. This time it’s as the expanded Deluxe Edition which has been released today. The original album remains untouched in all its glory. We’ve also taken the time to collect a lot of other sounds from the period and included them in the hope of giving a clearer picture of that moment in time. Dig in to check out the original intro to “He’s Simple, He’s Dumb, He’s the Pilot” (called “Discarded Pilot Intro” here) as well as the original demos for “Chartsengrafs,” “Beautiful Ground,” and “Hewlett’s Daughter.” The Bsides are there as well along with an expanded version of the booklet with writings from Jason and Jim and some unseen photos from back in the day. Scroll down to the bottom of this email to check out the full tracklisting.

You can get all of this digitally via iTunes worldwide. Here's the link to buy it in the US. In Europe, you can also grab an actual double disc CD in a nice digipak. You can order that via Amazon here. This physical package is not going to be released in the US so if you want it you’ll have to pay the import prices. Sorry about that! It’s unfortunately just one of those things.

Also, on October 3rd, Europe will get a new double vinyl version of the record. You can check out the tracklisting for that and pre-order it here.

On Tuesday August 23rd (tomorrow) at 1pm London time, Jason will be on BBC6 with Radcliffe & Maconie and to discuss the reissue. You can listen live here.

The Sophtware Slum (Deluxe Edition)

Disc 1

1. He’s Simple, He’s Dumb, He’s The Pilot

2. Hewlett’s Daughter

3. Jed The Humanoid

4. The Crystal Lake

5. Chartsengrafs

6. Underneath The Weeping Willow

7. Broken Household Appliance National Forest

8. Jed’s Other Poem (Beautiful Ground)

9. E. Knievel Interlude (The Perils Of Keeping It Real)

10. Miner At The Dial-A-View

11. So You’ll Aim Toward The Sky

Disc Two

1. Discard Pilot Intro

2. Our Dying Brains

3. L.F.O.

4. Wives of Farmers

5. Chartsengrafs (original demo)

6. N. Blender

7. Wonder Why In L.A.

8. Air Conditioners in the Woods

9. Moe Bandy Mountaineers

10. First Movement / Message Send

11. XD-Data-II

12. Beautiful Ground (original cassette tape demo)

13. Street Bunny

14. She-Deleter

15. What Can’t Be Erased (Drinking Beer in the Bank of America with Two Chicks from Tempe Arizona)

16. I Don’t Want To Record Anymore

17. Aisle Seat 37-D

18. Hewlett’s Daughter (original cassette tape demo)

19. Rode My Bike To My Stepsister’s Wedding

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The companion EP, "Through a Frosty Plate Glass" is also essential...in fact, at one point, when you bought "The Sophtware Slump", you got this EP packaged along for free. Of course, now they are all available as part of the Deluxe Edition. Amazing songs on this EP include the following three:

Man, do I miss Grandaddy :boohoo:

Crap bands like Train, Nickelback, Maroon 5 keep going on while bands like Grandaddy get no love and can't even make enough money to barely keep afloat and have to call it a day.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...