Groove Stain – Hit The Breaks
4.) Tunnel Vision
7.) The One
8.) Our Way
9.) Can’t Stop Now / James II
The Pier Album Rating:
Release Date: June 5th, 2012
Official Website: Groove Stain Website
Formed in 1999, Groove Stain has since recorded five albums and toured the country alongside SOJA and Ballyhoo. Their fourth studio album, Out All Night, was ranked on iTunes as one of the top 20 reggae albums of 2010!
Their latest album, Hit The Breaks, was self-produced and recorded in Atlanta’s Tree Sound Studios. The group is currently on a month long album release summer tour.
Within the first few seconds of the intro, “James”, the bands core reggae/rock sound demands your attention and holds it until the very last note. Transitioning straight into one of my favorites, “Shut Down”, it sets the tone for the rest of Hit The Breaks with clean horn lines, hard-hitting drums, and a catchy melody.
The first official single off the album, “Girl”, starts with smooth acapella harmonies and jumps into full swing when paired with the steady chuck of the guitar and more of their signature horn selections. Plain and simple – it’s upbeat, completely contagious, and I dare you not to get the melody stuck in your head all afternoon.
Groove Stain showcases their edgier side on songs like “Tunnel Vision” and “Snooze” by incorporating distorted rock guitar and complex progressions. It is apparent that the band has found their comfort zone but by pushing their limits, they are still able to produce material that is fresh and original, especially after being in the game for over a decade.
The album comes to a close with one of the most intricate songs on the album, “Can’t Stop Now/James II”. Keeping the energy high until the end, the song summarizes the album perfectly by combining different elements from both their edgier and more upbeat songs while continuing the same “hit the breaks…” chant present in the intro.
From start to finish the album is constantly moving and there is not a second to rest. The songs flow together in such a way that it feels more like you are listening to one long set rather than nine completely different tracks. Thanks to Groove Stain’s powerful, unified sound, the album is infused with the energy of a live show while still maintaining pristine timing and sound quality.
Written & Reviewed By: Ashley Allred
[Editors Note: All reviews are reflective of the album in it’s entirety, from start to finish. These reviews are the honest opinion of each writer/reviewer, expressing their feedback as a genuine fan of the music. Each star rating reflects their review of the album, not the band. Music is subjective. Regardless of the review or star rating, we encourage you to listen to the music yourself & form your own opinion. Spread the awareness of all music in its art & contribution]