Hills Rolling – Sweet Tea

Hills Rolling – Sweet Tea / 2007 Whiskey Child / 9 Tracks / http://www.myspace.com/hillsrolling /

Hills Rolling is the latest project of Trey McGriff. Individuals may not be immediately familiar with McGriff’s work, but chances are good that they have heard McGriff’s music in the past. This is because McGriff’s music has been played in some capacity on The Real World – Denver, XM Satellite Radio, and different shows created by Comcast. Furthermore, if you have went to a Pepper, Slightly Stoopid, Molly Hatchet, or Finger 11 show, you may have heard McGriff open. The nine tracks on “Sweet Tea” show the reason why McGriff has received these accolades; each of the tracks here show a maturity that few acts or albums have. The disc starts off with “Crazie”, a rock track that skillfully balances between a gritty, seventies style and a more current rock style. The driving guitar riff on “Crazie” is what will tattoo Hills Rolling’s name into the minds and hearts of anyone that has the good fortune of tuning in.

The disc’s second track is “Not Again”, which expands upon the early nineties style that was slightly present during “Crazie”. “Not Again” will play well to fans of acts like “Grave Dancers Union”-era Spin Doctors and even Matthew Sweet. The inclusion of a set of bongos to the track diversifies Hills Rolling’s sound, while the vocal harmonies top off everything like the sweet cherry on a sundae. What is the strongest element to “Sweet Tea” is the fact that McGriff will take the momentum and general sound of the track immediately prior and tweak it for the following track. This means that the slightly psychedelic / trippy sound of “Not Again” is given a much more focal position during “Watching Waves”.

“Watching Waves” is strong for another reason; the vocals drop out during a number of points during the track, allowing the instrumental side of things a proper amount of time to shine. With everything hitting on all cylinders, Hills Rolling are able to make a mini epic in “No I Don’t Mind At All”. A strung-out sound opens up the track, after which different elements (guitar, harmonica) are added in at the proper time, for maximum impact. Touching on so many disparate segments and genres during this track, McGriff is able to show that his time in the sun will be sooner rather than later. Hills Rolling’s “Sweet Tea” is chock full of single-worthy tracks, and one or two will undoubtedly make it onto television shows and rock rotation in the months to come.

Top Tracks: No I Don’t Mind At All, Not Again

Rating: 7.6/10

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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