Record Review: Jared Mees and The Grown Children

Jared Mees and The Grown Children
Only Good Thoughts Can Stay
Portland, OR

“Impressive indie grind with powerful, lyrical pop”

Jared Mees and the Grown Children stay within the framework of what should be popular music on Only Good Thoughts Can Stay and get inside the listener on a metaphorical level.

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The drums roll over piano melodies as backing vocal harmonies tie the sound together throughout the album. The “yoo-hoo” calls at the end of “Toy Piano” give reason to fall in love with the release, because they directly feed the central idea of love being “like a toy piano that’s missing a few keys.” It’s feel-good music to listen to when feeling badly. The melodies and chords hint at hope while the lyrics reflect an inner search, attempting to qualify the wisdom of experience against the physical pressure of carrying its heavy truth.

Fun titles like “Juicy Fruit Prelude” and “Juicy Fruit” lead to an anticipation of superficial music, but these tunes scratch and tear at the surface with an overwhelming sentiment of feeling. The swelling contradicts its title and the first line speaks to a generation of addicts who persevered in breaking addictions just enough to “quit buying.” The depressed chorus breaks, giving way to a jovial solo and chord progression. The irony makes the song, and the album as a whole, speak. (Tender Loving Empire)

Recorded at Portland’s Type Foundry Studios // Engineered and produced by Adam Selzer

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