Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet


Grand Hotel


Nick's Picks: They are all without peer – what a treasure trove!!

FCC ALERT: "squeaky clean"

Review by Steven "Nick" Nickelson of The Explorers Club:

When I first heard this cd, I thought that I was listening to a re-mastered version of a 60s group that was in the same cross-section of beach music as the Beach Boys (“Sweet Delights”), Herb Alpert (“Grand Hotel”,”Acapulco Sunset”), Jay & The Americans (“Go For You”, “Summer Days, Summer Nights”). I mean, the tonal quality of the instruments and singing on this cd is so much clearer (“Bluebird”, “It's You”) than any of the older recorded music on vinyl. Now I find out (after researching this group) that this is a collection of original recordings, and they were released this year!. This group has a fantastic future ahead of them should beach music (“I've Been Waiting”) and/or surfer music stage a resurgence. This is what I would heartily recommend if you like feel-good music with depth, samba rhythms, and great ensemble singing (“Run, Run, Run”, ). As I am writing this, I feel like I am being transported back to my college days - pass the bong, dude. And that's my two nickels' worth........................Nick Bio The Explorers Club are a Pop rock band from the coast of South Carolina. They are a 6 man band whose debut album was released by Dead Oceans. Their music is almost entirely influenced by the vocal harmony styles and production of The Beach Boys.. They also draw some influence from classic rock and roll arrangements as made popular by The Beatles, Chuck Berry, Phil Spector, The Zombies, and The Byrds. The Explorer's Club continue the tradition of bands that loyally honor the style and sound of The Beach Boys, such as The Rip Chords and Bruce & Terry. "The Explorers Club may sound at first like a mash up of Burt Bacharach, Jellyfish and The Beach Boys, but what lies underneath is one of the few bands in recent times that have managed to pay homage to the past with a finely tuned ear toward the future. We've been playing them since the beginning and while we were expecting the new record to be good, "Grand Hotel" obliterates our expectations." -Mike Marrone // The Loft Sirius XM The Explorers Club was formed in Charleston, South Carolina in 2005. The group signed with indie record label Dead Oceans in June 2007 and released their debut album in 2008. Their first single, "Do You Love Me?", was released in April of that year. The Explorers Club's music has been featured on TV shows such as The O.C., How I Met Your Mother, and Bored to Death. Several members of The Explorers Club were previously in a band called 1984. To promote the February 2012 release of Grand Hotel, the band released three free EPs called "suites", each containing a cover and two rough mixes of tracks set to appear on the album. The final mixes for the album were done by Mark Linett, who is known for his work with The Beach Boys.

The Musicians:

・ Jason Brewer – songwriter, vocals, guitar, organ, wurlitzer

・ Dave Ellis – vocals, guitar, percussion, mandolin, accordion

・ Austin James – vocals, guitar, steel guitar

・ Kyle Polk – drums

・ Paul Runyon – vocals, piano, Hammond organ

・ Wally Reddington III – bvocals, Fender bass guitar

Session Musicians:

・ Neil Thomas – drums, percussion

・ Michael Williamson – songwriter, Fender bass, box guitar, vocals, keyboards

・ Troy Stains – songwriter, box guitar, Gibsnn Les Paul, Roger Mayer Fuzz, elextric sitar, Fender Bass, vocals

・ Matt Goldman – drums, strings, handclaps

・ Justin Chapman – Latin percussion

・ Trey Cooper – keyboards

・ Jim Foust – Spanish Box guitar

・ Probyn Gregory, Craig Sorrells – horns

・ James Abercrombie – songwriter, vocals

Session Vocalists:

・ Krista Brewer, Pete & Jen Schottleutner, Catherine & Jonathon Whitten

The Songs:


1. Acapulco (Sunrise)

2. Run Run Run

3. Anticipating

4. Bluebird

5. Grand Hotel

6. Go For You

7. Any Little Way

8. It's No Use

9. Sweet Delights

10. I've Been Waiting

11. It's You

12. Acapulco (Sunset)

13. Summer Days, Summer Nights

. 14. Weight Of The World

15. Open The Door

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Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

The opinions expressed in these reviews are those of the individual volunteers that submitted the article and do not necessarily reflect the views of WYCE or GRCMC; nor its staff, donors, or affiliates.