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Grab That Gun

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Album Review

The Organ's 2002 debut EP Sinking Hearts was more captivating than most of that year's full-length releases: over the course of just 15 minutes, the band crafted chiaroscuro meditations on falling in and out of love that were just as light and jangly as they were dark and brooding. The EP was a promising beginning, and Grab That Gun, the Organ's first album, builds on that promise by delivering more appealingly moody music instead of reinventing the band's sound. It's tempting, initially, to be slightly disappointed that the Organ didn't broaden its sonic territory. But, even though the music remains remarkably focused, Grab That Gun proves that the band has plenty of room for expression within its rather limited palette of droning organs, succinct drumming and sharp, upturned guitar lines that give new meaning to the term "hook." While this sound comes from the legacy of '80s college rock — at times suggesting a fusion of the Smiths' witty, bouncy melancholy and the on-the-sleeve passion of Throwing Muses — and also has ties to some of the other bands remaking new wave and post-punk in their own images, the Organ and Grab That Gun have a freshness that isn't often heard in any kind of rock music. This is partly due to the simplicity of the band's playing; some call it amateurish, although innocent is probably a more apt description. There's also a remarkable sincerity to the band's music, a large part of which comes from singer Katie Sketch's striking vocals and lyrics. Like the Muses' Kristin Hersh, Sketch possesses a voice that's vulnerable, self-assured and ever so slightly unearthly. And though lyrics like "There is nothing I can do / But cut and think about you" and "Our hearts didn't come together / But I saw the two collide" can seem like the worst kind of diary rants on paper, they're more dramatic than drama queen when Sketch sings them. Melancholy covers Grab That Gun like a reverse umbrella, particularly on "Steven Smith" and "There Is Nothing I Can Do." However, the Organ's songs are too short to allow wallowing, and even within the album's consistent sound and mood, undercurrents of joy and energy make their way to the surface on tracks like the gorgeous breakup song "No One Has Ever Looked So Dead." Likewise, "I Am Not Surprised," one of the band's most kinetic numbers, also showcases the Organ's ability to make its namesake instrument sound dour or cheery in an eye-blink. Both of these songs originated on Sinking Hearts, and songs from the EP make up almost half of Grab That Gun. However, the album has its own identity; the forceful first track "Brother" shows that the band's focus is growing ever sharper, and more languid; atmospheric songs like "A Sudden Death" add an ebb and flow that Sinking Hearts didn't have. Even though the album is in many ways more of the same, with a band like this, that's far from a bad thing. Grab That Gun is a fine debut that captures the Organ's knack for writing strangely timeless, and beautifully sad, songs.

Customer Reviews

One of my favourite albums

I live in Northern Ireland and I went online almost immediately to buy this CD from a Canadian website when I heard "Brother" for the first time on an american television series. I bought the CD in 2005 and listened to it at least once every day for 2 weeks - I am really glad I took a chance and bought it after hearing only one song. The lyrics are wonderful, very personal and heartfelt. The melodies in each track are intricate and the band make good use of their instruments: the album has crisp, simple production values which really enhance the sound of the songs. The Organ's style of music is reminiscent of UK indie bands of the 80s such as The Smiths, New Order and Joy Division but it would be unfair to say that the music doesn't have an original and special quality of its own. On the whole I recommend this album wholeheartedly: it bears repeated listening.

Wow

After hearing Brother on music television late one night I brought this album. It's simply outstanding. People will compare the Organ to bands but in reality the only thing they really share is a primal rawness & a fantastic ear for a great song. Particular highlights are the aforementioned Brother, Steven Smith, Sinking Hearts & Memorize The City. The haunting impact this album will have is only compounded by the fact that the girls have decided to call it a day - modern musics biggest loss so far...

title? I just want to write a review...

This is a bunch of songs clumped together in one place, known as an 'album'. Ok, the songs, they were possibly borne out of numerous 'band practices'. The content of the songs? Well, its dark and handsome, like Denzel Washington. Very broody, very curesque and very good, even at first listen. And I dont normally like this kind of thing.

Biography

Formed: August, 2001 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Cana

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s

Attempting to separate themselves from the new millennium surge of post-punk bands, the ladies of the Organ came together in 2001 to design their own original modern sound. Katie Sketch (vocals), Deb Cohen (guitar), Jenny Smyth (organ), Shelby Stocks (drums), and Ashley Webber (bass) hail from Vancouver, and each has an appreciation for bands such as the Cure and the Smiths. In summer 2002, the Organ introduced their dark style with the release of the Sinking Hearts EP. The Canadian press and indie...
Full bio
Grab That Gun, The Organ
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