Pretty Vacant One

Track by Track: The Sun is Coming by Superfine

Well, this was a particularly nice surprise to see on my Instagram feed yesterday.

A brand spanking new 3 track EP from Superfine.

From Rob Grad’s Instagram: I didn’t plan it, but sometimes things just happen. After 18 years, I recorded 3 new songs for my rock music project, Superfine.

He continues: I was pulling my hair out (which is really not a smart thing to do at my age) grinding away, trying to make some headway on some new artwork, when I stumbled on some demos I recorded in the 90’s for Superfine. The quality wasn’t great, but in hearing them with fresh ears, I realized the songs are some of the best rock songs I’ve ever written. It felt great to rock out after all these years. The concept of Superfine was based on pure freedom. Taking chaos and beating it into submission. I think it’s a beautiful metaphor for how to live. Taking something that is essentially out of control, running off the rails, and reigning it in for a thrilling ride.

A little background for those unfamiliar with Superfine: They released two albums Immaculate Rejection in 2001 and Unsound in 2003 before Rob went solo with his music, art, and writing. (And for those who would like an even deeper dive into music history, Rob is the same Rob of Kik Tracee fame as well.)

Non music related, if it hadn’t been for Rob’s creative guidance and inspiration, my novel The Anger of Angels would have never seen its completion this year.

But I digress.

Let’s jump into this 3 track EP of The Sun Is Coming, feet first…or should I say ears first.

Red C – whew boy, what an absolute epic way to kick things off. I would absolutely agree with Rob when he said the songs are “loud, proud and raucous”. This song is an emotional punch to the face. Leaving you with a black eye yet feeling pretty all right that you got the snot beat out of you. The initial guitar riff hooks you and doesn’t let go until the bass kicks you in the teeth. Lyric, I love: “…you wear your inside outside that’s not like how it is here in California…” The bass and drum in Red C are my favorite. They’re just infectious. A good infectious, not pandemic infectious.

Sherlock Holmes – hello bass, I love you. (If you follow me, you know I’m a sucker for a slick bass line.) The bass is the first thing I noticed. Right off the bat. It’s contagious and so devilishly delectable. I loved the bass so much that it wasn’t even until the 2nd listen that I noticed anything else. Again, I’m a sucker for a slick bass line. Once I got over my initial excitement of the bass, I’m only left to discover the rest of this great little gem. Like above, when Rob mentions pure freedom, that freedom can be heard in this song. It’s such a fun song and the last minute or so of the song is pure unadulterated chaotic rock from guitar to lyrics and yes even bass.

Damn the Roses – probably my favorite track off the EP. Yes, it too has a bass line that I just want to dive into and float away on. Having said that, it’s the lyrics that really clench this into the favorite spot. They’re heartfelt, emotional, and raw. The way Rob carries this tune vocally during the chorus is so familiar, cozy, and comforting, yet you can hear the heartache of someone who is ready to let go. Bonus part of the song, it has a kazoo! (And if it’s not a kazoo, it’s something that sounds very kazoo like.) And good god all mighty, it fucking fits perfectly into the song.

Continuing from Rob’s Instagram regarding the artwork: the image I used for the cover is a sneak peek at a new series of artwork. While I didn’t create the image specifically for this music, I felt it reflects the mood. Also, recording Superfine again after all these years shook some dust, and opened the door for this work to happen.

I must say, after 18 years, Superfine nor Rob Grad has skipped a beat. This EP is nothing short of wonderful. If there’s more to follow in 2022, fans will be gifted to more great eagworms and stunning art from either or both.

Listen to The Sun Is Coming