There is really so much to love or not love about the Finnish band, Steve ‘n’ Seagulls. I guess it just depends on how open minded you are. First off, their band moniker is a genius play on American action star, Steven Segal. Are they paying homage to him, who knows? Second, they have become You Tube sensations with their bluegrass(ish) covers of some of the greatest rock and roll songs of the past 50 years.
I had watched a few of their videos and was pleasantly surprised. Their covers of “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC and “The Trooper” by Iron Maiden are amazing. What I did not know, was that they went on to make a couple of albums, and now they are releasing a third album! Where have I been?
On August 31, 2018, Steve ‘n’ Seagulls will be dropping their 3rd album, Grainsville on Spinefarm Records. Not only are there a fresh new batch of killer covers, they have also included three original songs in the mix.
Grainsville opens with an air banjo worthy version of “Are You Gonna Go My Way?” by Lenny Kravitz. Herman, the banjo player shreds all over and breathes new life into an already classic song.
The track listing on this album is all over the place, and that is what makes this album so exciting.
The boys tackle such varied bands as Faith No More with a very faithful version of “Digging the Grave.” Elsewhere, the cover of Van Halen’s “Panama” is quite inspiring and they completely changed the feel and mood of “Alive” by Pearl Jam.
I am not even scratching the surface when it comes to the crazy renditions you are about to hear. Not only do they tackle Pantera’s “I’m Broken”, they add mariachi style horns to it as well. It has to be listened to, to be believed. “Sabotage” from the Beastie Boys and “Gimme All Your Lovin” by ZZ Top also get the Steve ‘n’ Seagulls treatment.
By far, the best and most original transformation comes in the form of their cover of the disco influenced KISS classic, “I Was Made for Loving You.” Their version is everything the KISS version is not. It is haunting and melancholic. To quote their press release, it sounds “the way an obsessed stalker might sing it.” That is a 100% accurate description and actually the reason why it is the best track on the album.
The three original compositions are all incredible songs. “Ghost Town” has a dark and desolate feel while incorporating a great sing along chorus. “Down to the River” has more of an upbeat tempo that will get your hands clapping and toes tapping. “Faster than Light” is my favorite of the three originals because it has more of a rock element to it.
Closing out on an epic note, the band covers “Voodoo Child” by the late, great Jimi Hendrix. They slowed the tempo of the song, giving it a real swampy blues feel. I honestly got chills listening to how eerie it sounds.
Steve ‘n’ Seagulls are definitely coming into their own with this third release. Grainsville will only further their mission to change the game and destroy all perceptions of “inside the box” thinking when it comes to rock music. Listening to this album was a lot of fun. I can, for now, only imagine how amazing they are when it is taken into a live concert setting. Rating: 8.5/10 Stars.
Contributing Writer for I’m Music Magazine Jason “Supes” Mesa
Purchase Grainsville HERE
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