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Heroes and Villains

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Album Review

On Heroes and Villains, Paloalto work with the post-alternative mix found on their self-titled debut for a glossy sophomore finish. Singer/songwriter James Grundler is more personal and thoughtful, not overly gushing or sentimental, and regardless of the title, Heroes and Villains is not glutton for sorrow. Having Rick Rubin as a producer is an interesting choice, but his talent for polishing up a band's imperfections works in Paloalto's favor. He zeroes in on the band's crunchy, quick riffs and Grundler's commanding vocals, and songs like "Fade Out/In" and "Last Way Out of Here" capture the band's earnest effort. Finding out who you are and accepting it is thematic throughout Heroes and Villains, particularly on "Running Home" and "Going Going Gone." Those who appreciate an honest, basic record will enjoy Paloalto's simple approach. Sonically, they don't venture out and that's okay. Paloalto like to play it safe.

Customer Reviews

Heroes and Villains

I bought the CD around the time it came out on a whim. The first time through I wasn't too keen on it, but the more and more I listened to it, the more and more I started to enjoy it. At times they'll remind you of a less daring Coldplay and I swear the lead singer channels Bono on a few of these tracks. The great thing about Paloalto is that they aren't trying to be anything more than what they are, and if you really found yourself enjoying music in the late 90s, this is a good buy. If I had to pick one track, it'd probably be Breathe In, which I probably include on just about every burned CD I put in my car.

Stick with it

This is a great "undiscovered" disc for me. I had never of them prior to a suggestion from a friend. I enjoyed it and hope that you don't tamper with the sound despite critics suggestions. (as you know they aren't always right - okay, most of the time they aren'!) I look forward to your next release.

Going, Going, Gone

Another one of those bands that I thankfully stumbled upon. I think I saw them opening up for Supergrass in NYC. Holy Sh*t... they blew everyone away. I bought the CD the following day. Every note was played just perfect. And this album is a lot like that show. Just brilliant! The World Outside, Last Way out of Here, Seed.... all phenomenal songs. I'm not sure how their record company dropped the ball on this one... but this could have been huge. Easily the best CD of the year.


Formed: 1998 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Hip-Hop/Rap

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Rock group Paloalto is led by singer/songwriter/guitarist James Grundler, a Los Angeles native who named the band not after the northern California city, but after his preschool. Grundler began writing songs as a grade school student, and by 1994, was coming up with compositions he felt good about. In the late '90s, he saw a band featuring lead guitarist Jason Johnson and recruited him for his group. The next to join was bassist Alex Parnell. With drummer Steve Clark, the newly formed band began...
Full Bio
Heroes and Villains, Paloalto
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Customer Ratings