‘Chinese Fountain’ refines musical scope

The Growlers latest album blends genres to create a unique sound that embodies a new generation of angst, love

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Special To / The Advocate

By Lorenzo Morotti, Editor-in-chief

In its fifth album, The Growlers have managed to blend pop, beach and classic rock with underlying psychedelic and gothic influences to produce its best album yet.

Titled “Chinese Fountain,” this is the band’s most refined album. It was released on Sept. 23 by Everloving Records and has since made “Beach Goth” a viable music genre.

This latest album is the band expanding its sound into a more modern realm while not forgetting the sounds and consciousness of the 1960s culture it has been so heavily influenced by.

The title track is the third song on the album and is the most experimental.

It combines synthesizers with whiny guitar riffs and a disco-influenced bass line to create a fresh sound that it has been unable to achieve in any prior album.

The Growlers have finally reached a new threshold of sound that can influence a wider range of listeners by introducing more variety with each track.

The lyrics are slightly distorted but resonate with a new technology dependent generation of millennials — a generation so lost within its egos and social media that has created a whole new set of problems with which it must cope.

“Every little kid wants a computer in his pocket/ The trophies are on the mantel of the digital prophets/ The internet is bigger than Jesus and John Lennon/ And nobody wants to know where we’re headed.”

The cheerful tempo of the chorus masks the somber lyrics that the band emphasizes, which is also highlighted throughout the entirety of the band’s newest effort.

“He drops his quarters in a Chinese fountain/ Hills scraped dry with no choice but being creative/ Everybody’s sick and tired of waiting/ Couldn’t get any harder to be patient.”

The most hopeful song is the sixth track, “Going Gets Tough.” It starts slowly with melodic guitar strumming and immediately goes into the lyrics.

“Off work in the morning/ Up at the crack of dawn/ All my money worries/ Wherever I go come along.”

It is an anthem to the every day stressors that many people have to deal with while coming to terms with the inevitable death we are all headed toward.

“Still always remembering/ When the going gets tough/ That the labor of our love/ Will reward us soon enough.”

Love is the answer to get people through their problems is the underlying message of the track and, ultimately, the entire album.

“Rare Hearts” is the second to last song. It is the most inspirational love song on the album.

The guitar throughout the song drifts the listener down a stream of consciousness that would ultimately be too painful to think about without a melody.

“Is it too much to dream/ That we can forever be/ Rare hearts that never disagree.”

It will be difficult for the band to improve on this album due to the ambitious scope of sound it has achieved by combining thoughtful lyrics with a developed sound.

The Growlers have weaved a tapestry of sound with “Chinese Fountain” that can be admired, emulated and expanded upon by listeners and musicians for years to come.