During the era of mixed tapes, it took the better part of a day to craft side A and side B with songs tailored to the tastes of a particular friend. Oftentimes songs by indie bands were shared: recently discovered local treasures or curiosities from afar. This is how I first heard Graveltruck, on a mixed tape made by a good friend.
It’s fitting that the original, rough tracks of the songs on this album were preserved on cassette tape for 14 years. Shortly before Graveltruck disbanded the trio won free studio time through a battle of the bands competition. Three cassette copies were made from the studio master tape. Over the years, one lone copy of the original tapes survived, thanks to a friend and fan of the band. The rediscovery of these lost tracks prompted the resuscitation and final recording of the songs found here in The Clocks Have Exploded Ages Ago.
The Graveltruck trio are not rock stars. In fact, they might even call themselves anti-rock stars, forgoing the swagger and spectacle that other bands embrace because it’s not needed. One of Graveltruck’s talents lies in knowing when to let go of ego and make way for the music, while offering a glimpse of human frailty and sentimentality, hiding itself in irony.
Graveltruck have achieved a level of collaboration that most groups throw over to follow the lead of one or two band mates. Each member brings ideas and song structures informed by their individual artistic sensibilities and musical influences and then work through the songs until they find a common ground — a nexus, a groove — where each musical and lyrical contribution creates itself instinctively. Three musicians converge to create songs that allow space for each to do his thing while also preserving and maintaining the integrity of the song, which could not survive without the collaboration of all parts.
No reunion is signaled by the release of this CD. Three former band mates met in the summer of 2010 to carry out the original intention of these recordings — to properly finish what was started. It comes to this. No resurgence or reclaiming of musical past, no “best of” album, but a piece of Graveltruck history re-worked, re-envisioned, and brought forward to fulfill their earlier promise and potential.