By Brandon “B-Mac” McCarthy
Back in June 2017, Matt and I had the opportunity to catch the first Southern California performance of a band that has quickly captured the attention of music fans all over. From Frankenmuth, Mich., I proudly present Greta Van Fleet. The first time I listened to them, I was astonished by their sound and appreciation for the old school vinyl style of rock ‘n’ roll. After witnessing the spectacle they put on at the Viper Room, I knew they were destined to be one of rock’s newest heroes. I know I say that about a lot of new bands (who I do believe are the new flag bearers or heavy rock), but there is something special about Greta Van Fleet. Consisting of the Kiszka brothers (vocalist Joshua, lead guitarist Jacob, and bassist Samuel) and drummer Danny Wagner, the band that emulates Led Zeppelin in a lot of ways, has put together a new double EP, From The Fires.
A direct sequel to their first EP, that was released earlier this year, Black Smoke Rising, Greta continues to bring the fans a good mixture of hard blues rock. From The Fires features 4 brand new songs, as well as the 4 from the first EP. First we start off with “Edge of Darkness,” which is very dark and bluesy. Jacob smokes up the air, with fiery riffs that would rival Jimmy Page. He is walking on an air of perfection. I tell you what though; Joshua is one hell of a vocalist. He channels his inner Robert Plant and belts out glorious harmonies. Just when you think he hits the high notes, he goes even higher. Samuel tears it up on the bass, and Wagner blasts off on the drums without going to heavy on it. It is very similar style to John Bonham.
The EP also features the crunchy original “Talk on the Street,” which has a very raunchy melody. The other 2 tracks are covers of the Sam Cooke classic “A Change Is Gonna Come,” which features a smooth, tuneful keyboard section played by Samuel, and the folk rock number “Meet on a Ledge,” originally performed by Fairport Convention. I felt these covers were good choices by Greta Van Fleet, because it allowed them to spread their wings and try new styles to go along with their hard rock fashion. This EP also features their already ultra famous singles, “Highway Tune” and “Safari Song.”
If ever a rock fan was looking for a band that was young and vigorous, that embraced the past sounds, then look no further. “From The Fires” is a fine EP, that will help push Greta further in their young careers. Thanks to the dual efforts of Joshua and Jacob, they have brought the fans another hit musical effort. I am already comparing them to Plant and Page, as well as Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, and Brian Johnson and Angus Young. A guitar/singer duo that will bring mysticism and wonder to rock ‘n’ roll, something that has absent for a while. To Greta Van Fleet, I salute you. Horns up!!! 9.5/10
1. Safari Song
2. Edge of Darkness
3. Flower Power
4. A Change Is Gonna Come
5. Highway Tune
6. Meet on the Ledge
7. Talk on the Street
8. Black Smoke Rising
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