• GrooveLily – Little Light – (Independent)
Would you like the short version of this review? All right then, here it is: Groovelily rocks. Go immediately to http://www.groovelily.com/ and purchase a copy of “Little Light.” For those of you who require a bit more detailed description of a potential music purchase, here comes the long version:
GroovLily is a high-energy rock/pop trio from New York who play music that, while original, you’ll swear you’ve heard somewhere before. It’s not a plagiarism thing, but rather a knack by band members Valerie Vigoda and Brendan Milburn for writing catchy melodies and memorable lyrics.
GroovLily is steadily becoming a known name around the country. In addition to touring as a group, Vigoda, who handles lead vocalist duties and plays violin, also has toured with the likes of Cyndi Lauper, Joe Jackson, Cher and Tina Turner. Microsoft also selected GroovLily as the featured artist on the company’s Equal Access software package, of which 50,000 were distributed. Previous artists selected for this honor include the Brian Setzer Orchestra and Santana.
On “Little Light,” the latest release from GroovLily, the listener is presented with 12 songs (11 originals and one cover) that perfectly demonstrate why this band is gaining in popularity by the day. The first song, “Prayer for the Unrequited,” begins with Milburn’s gentle keyboard playing, which soon is joined by Vigoda’s lovely singing. The style of the song would fit right in with the pop songs of the early to mid-1980s. Drummer Gene Levin, who rounds out the trio, plays in a jazzy style that has been compared to that of Carter Beauford of the Dave Matthews Band. Milburn’s keyboard style is reminiscent of that of Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen or Ben Folds. Indeed, the entire band is a lot like the now-defunct Ben Folds Five, save for the fact that Vigoda wields a violin instead of a bass. That fiddle is coupled with a voice that will remind you of contemporary artists such as Paula Cole and even Gwen Stefani, minus the hiccups.
While just about every song on “Little Light” is worth mentioning, some of the better compositions include “Weight of the World,” “Love Song Without Metaphor (I Want You Back)” and the CD’s title track. Even the sole cover, a tricked-out reggae version of Foreigner’s “I Want to Know What Love Is,” goes from cheesy pop ballad to something wonderful in the hands of GroovLily.
To hear a sampling of the band before you decide to buy the CD, check out http://www.groovelily.com/ for a taste of three of the songs from “Little Light,” as well as songs from other GroovLily releases. You can also check out the band live and in person when it plays Theatre 99 downtown on Saturday. After doing so, you’ll probably agree that you could have just stuck with the condensed review. (A)
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