Grayceon surfaces bearing “Pearl” from their forthcoming EP

Grayceon doesn’t always fly with conventional minds; the band’s approach is too unorthodox to fit on neatly into a single box. Or maybe their instrumentation—tom-heavy drum playing, finger-picked guitar, and cello-instead-of-bass lead people to dismiss Grayceon as a gimmick band. But when Grayceon hits—as in lead single “Shellmounds” on their 2011 album All We Leave Behind—they pull no emotional punches. That was the Grayceon I wanted to hear when they released, “Pearl”, the first single from their Pearl and The End of Days EP

A cursory listen to “Pearl,” the first track from the EP, shows the band using every tool in their repertoire. “Pearl” opens with the band at their most minimal, using cello scratches and atmospheric feedback, before the song’s first riff proper bounds in on the up-beat. Faster and thrashier than ever, the riff gives way to long and sorrowful instrumental bridges, then returns at the song’s nadir of energy. “Pearl” is the picture of dynamic songwriting.

Judging by the title, one might expect “Pearl” to belong in the repertoire of another Jackie Perez Gratz project, the ocean-obsessed Giant Squid, but subject is her daughter and not compressed calcium carbonate. Much like its namesake, “Pearl” comes in fine layers, and is rare and precious.

“Pearl,” along with the rest of the Pearl and The End of Days EP, was recorded with Jack Shirley at Atomic Garden Studios in the Bay Area in the Fall of 2012, and will be released on February 12th on The Flenser. Stream the first track below.

-Joseph Schafer