Now fully warm, Grand Hotel really start to bounce. "In the Bank" has a Duran Duran thing going on, a rave-up that's a little bit disco. "Learn2Dance" features a riff that's almost "Billie Jean," with a sentiment to match: "She put her body up against me/I knew I made the right decision." "Denise" is like an indie-rock version of what Smokey Robinson would have done (and I'm really not sure how that's possible).
Part of that's simply the passion Gervais evinces. He's completely invested.
By the closing "Thanks!," a goofy vamp, almost totally different from everything else here, you've got to be a little unsure how to accept those thanks. Is it snarling and sarcastic or enthusiastic and sincere? "Well I like your face/But I hate your smile/so keep your mouth shut, baby."
Okay. It's probably the former. Grand Hotel sound here like they're tight as hell, feeding off a bit of that us-against-the-world meme that can bring out great performances. They keep this up? Watch the fuck out.
Sam Pfeifle can be reached at email@example.com.
IN COLOR | Released by Grand Hotel | with Kurt Baker | at Port City Music Hall, in Portland | Feb 22 | myspace.com/grandhotel
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