Curiously, it just happens. It might seem like a long lost art or ancient phenomenon, but it’s an invariably timeless approach…
No premeditation, posturing, or overthinking required, Gringo Star pick up their instruments and go. It’s how the Atlanta quartet—brothers Peter [vocals, guitar, keys, percussion] and Nick Furgiule [vocals, bass, guitar, percussion], Josh Longino [guitar, bass], and Mario Colangelo [drums]—quietly turned into intriguing indie outliers. That purity doubles as a linchpin for their adventurous musical necromancy as they seamlessly fuse dynamically dusty garage rock, doo-wop harmonies straight from a fifties jukebox, and surfed-up alternative riding its own wave. It also remains a hallmark of fan favorite albums such as All Y’all , Count Yer Lucky Stars , and Floating Out To See .
In 2016, they leveled up again on The Sides and in Between. Consequence of Sound proclaimed the record, “an honest attempt at reviving rock ‘n’ roll,” while Magnet assured, “nothing curtails The Sides and in Between from taking large, genre-defying outbound steps.” Along the way, the group earned the adoration of a veritable cult following between sharing stages with the likes of Feist, Weezer, Cat Power, Best Coast, Wavves, Black Lips, The Toadies, and more. The band’s fifth album and second for Nevado Music, Back To The City, sees them once again follow a natural instinct.
“There’s never much premeditation,” says Nick. “We don’t overthink it. The music comes together the way it’s meant to. We simply make what we want to hear.”
“We tried hard to make an album we liked ourselves without considering what’s popular,” agrees Peter. “At the same time, we refined the process and came up with some new ideas.”
Once again, they recorded, self-produced, and mixed at Peter’s own Studio 234 in their native Atlanta, GA. However, the palette expanded with the inclusion of sweeping strings and robust orchestral elements. These aural flourishes added a dramatic heft to the delivery.
“With this album, we polished off the mixes a little more,” Peter continues. “There are a lot more textures with the strings on many of the songs.”
“We’ve definitely evolved,” adds Nick.
The first single “Easy” highlights the evolution. Airy vocals glide over rustling clean guitars and a chilled-out, simmering beat before the string-backed refrain takes hold.
“It was one of those songs that kind of wrote itself,” states Peter. “The melody was floating around with me for a while on the piano. Lyrically, it’s expressing an emotion. Whether it’s a feeling of longing for something, leaving something behind, or about the rollercoaster you sometimes get in life, I can’t say, but maybe it incorporates a little of all those feelings.”
Elsewhere on the record, “Mr. Mystery” evokes a nostalgic spirit as it surprises sonically. Meanwhile, the title track “Back to the City” shows their “more rock ‘n’ roll side.”
Peter goes on, “We thought it was a really suiting title for the current culture we live in. There’s been a huge ‘migration’ in U.S. cities from the suburbs back to the city.”
No matter where they go, Gringo Star’s journey keeps on rolling in the most natural way.
“This is what we love to do,” Nick leaves off. “It’s amazing when people can relate. We’re not going to stop.”