John Grant

Bella Union / US

  • Friday 17 20:30 - 21:30

    Sónar by Day - SonarHall

Pure class

John Grant will perform for the first time at Sónar and present his new album "Grey Tickles, Black Pressure". The album once again demonstrates that Grant is one of the most sophisticated composers and performers around today. And also the most versatile: the man from Michigan is more than adept at moving between mid-paced pop, classical instrumentation and a refined aesthetic, to soaring electro glam, with all the elements sitting together as if it were the most normal thing in the world. Increasingly free from the chains of traditional structure and pre-established patterns, his new songs are more modern and visceral than ever without losing any of his long established musical identity. Grant is like Benjamin Button: the more the years pass by, the younger he appears to be.

This state of lucidity and understanding is not achieved overnight. Grant headed indie rock band The Czars for 10 years, where he amply demonstrated his compositional skills. After the group disbanded Grant took a few years to rest and reflect before finally releasing his solo debut, "Queen of Denmark" in 2010, a powerful album exposing his demons (his sexual orientation, for example) and addictions (alcohol, drugs). His second album followed ("Pale Green Ghosts"), along with a new life in Iceland, awards and recognition from both the broadsheet press and the music industry. He collaborated with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra as well as Hercules and Love Affair (where he began to show his adventurous side as a solo artist) and very personal covers of Elton John and Lee Hazlewood (the latter alongside Alison Goldfrapp), featuring on both their respective albums.