"#1 Local Album of the Year 2007" - The Patriot Ledger (Boston, MA)
"#8 National Album of the Year 2007" - The Patriot Ledger (Boston, MA)
"Top 15 Local Albums of the Year 2007" -The Boston Globe
One of the Ten "Band You Have to Hear" - The Improper Bostonian
Winner "Outstanding Americana Act of the Year" 2007 Boston Music Awards
Winner "Best Local Band" of 2007 in the Boston Phoenix Reader's Poll.
Winner "Best Roots Act" in the 2007 WFNX/Phoenix Best Music Poll.
In their new release, Pretty Little Wrecking Ball, Girls Guns and Glory adroitly captures what has long been viewed as country music’s biggest contradiction: toe-tapping sorrow. The Boston-based five piece masters this technique with such ease that it’s hard to believe they’re not from the Southern culture that inspires their music. Adding influences of rock, bluegrass, and rockabilly to country’s greatest attributes, the result from this Boston five-piece is a genuine and earnest sound. Averaging an age of 25, each member of GGG has been playing music for well over a decade. The comfortable knowledge each of them shares with their instruments is palpable; their songs are inventive and catchy, building complex walls of sound while still allowing the listener to hear simple messages within their melody.
The recording process for Pretty Little Wrecking Ball began during last summer’s heatwave at Noise in the Attic Studios in Scituate, MA run by Producer Rob Loyot, where the guys were able to take their time in recording their second album in as many years. Recording the album over a period of five months, Girls Guns & Glory made sure the record was going in the direction they wanted. “We chose a lot of takes, not because they were the best executed takes, but because they had the best feeling. Our choices were based more on performance than execution,” says frontman and songwriter Ward Hayden, who - rhythm guitar aside - also has a history of playing drums, bass, and mandolin in other musical projects. A big fan of Hank Williams, his admiration of the legend comes from his ability to tell a good tale of heartache and woe with so few words. Influences also include the building composition of Bright Eyes’ songs, the gruffness and edge of Steve Earl’s music, and even the aggressive delivery in a lot of punk and hardcore.
Although Hayden has an impressive music resume, percussionist Brendan Murphy also has quite a list: congas, djembe, washboard, guero, vibraslap, tambourine, shakers and chekere. “If it makes noise, then I’d like to get my hands on it” he asserts. Layering different percussive instruments to create a full sound, the unconventional backbone of the record’s music comes from the incorporation of that reggae style of recording into rock and folk. Colin Toomey, who coined the term “Business Elvis” for his signature hairstyle, is lead guitarist. “If it’s dangerous then I’m probably interested in doing it…or at least watching you try,” says Toomey. Drummer John Graham – aka Johnny Surprises –has been at it since his musician mother had him taking percussion lessons from Tito Puente. Adding to the mix is bassist Bruce “Bagley” Beagley who is equally inspired by traditional Irish folk music, 50’s rock and an impressive amount of outlaw country. Coming from so many different corners has allowed the band to explore a variety of sonic concoctions under the guise of Americana.
In Pretty Little Wrecking Ball, layers of instruments converge to build a barrage of sound and excitement while other songs are intimate and personal. “Big Man,” with its driving rhythm, is the kind of track that grabs a listener from the start. While the song “Tennessee Rose” is haunting and sorrowful, exploring a different side of the band’s ability to create lush songs with simple instrumentation. “Tennessee Rose, you remain something that I’ll never know / I guess that’s how it goes / North is where I’m meant to be / I’ll be there ‘til the day my body’s cold,” sings Hayden. The plethora of instruments that normally color their songs take a back seat and the high, lonesome sound of Hayden’s voice soars over the acoustic guitar.
The combination of backgrounds and musical talents that are at the core of Pretty Little Wrecking Ball are the driving force behind the accessibility of Girls Guns & Glory. The country twang mixed with the genuine sentiment of folk captures the attention of all listeners who can appreciate a catchy yet thoughtful tune. With their extensive musical knowledge and audience-oriented attitude, Girls Guns & Glory are sure to get your heart to ache and your toe to tap.
"Girls Guns and Glory delivered a graceful, sturdy set of Buddy Holly-meets-Buck Owens twang 'n' roll that translated to the night's most sublime performance. Singer-guitarist Ward Hayden has the pillowy voice of a '50s pin-up star -- the constant comparisons to crooners like Chris Isaak and Lyle Lovett are well-deserved -- and his band's amber-soaked melodies, tight musicianship, and casual elegance were a tonic to an evening." -The Boston Globe
"Girls Guns and Glory isn't your typical rock n' roll band. They burst into their first set, treating a capacity crowd to licks to tunes that would make Charlie Daniels and Tom Petty tip their hats. The sound is as gritty as the Rolling Stones and as honest as Johnny Cash with every moment of it wild and fun" -The Noise
"Girls, Guns and Glory just might re-ignite the whole country-rock scene in New England...GG&G has some serious country music chops, but they also kick it up with rock ’n’ roll abandon. Vocalist Ward Hayden has a baritone to die for, a Johnny Cash authority with an appealing warble built in...The band’s set was startling for its pinpoint precision and sophisticated arrangements...These five guys have honed their sound and really made it work." -The Patriot Ledger
"Imagine Lyle Lovett and Chris Isaak paying tribute to classic American rock n' roll from Elvis, Hank Williams, Johnny Cash and Roy Orbison. Members of the 1 1/2 year old Boston quintet Girls Guns & Glory say their music is frequently labeled as alt-country, but they don't agree and neither do I. The nine tracks off 3G's debut CD "Fireworks and Alcohol" mix old-time rock n' roll with twangy, Americana-style vocals and a wordly selection of percussion instruments...Brendan Murphy sprinkles 3G's tunes with conga drums, djembe, washboard and even a donkey jaw" -The Boston Herald
"Sporting Tex-Mex rhythms, cowboy guitars and vibrato rich vocals that skirt a western yodel, Girls Guns & Glory band members Ward Hayden on vocals & guitar, Bruce Beagley on bass guitar, Colin Toomey on Guitars and Brendan Murphy on percussion kick up a qualified dust cloud of cowpoke tuneage sure to remind us of what country/western music should sound like. Long before country posers like Garth Brooks came along, country music was ripe with heartfilled sentiment fueled by jangling acoustic and electric guitars and the clanging of spurs. Girls Guns & Glory have recaptured all of that and more." -Metronome Magazine
"To paraphrase from The Blues Brothers, Girls Guns & Glory give the listener both types of music, country and western. But unlike the fate of Jake and Elwood, Girls Guns & Glory would most likely be greeted with generous foot stomping and appreciative beer clanking by the blue-collar crowd...It's a great sound...Lead singer Ward Hayden laments that "every place I go / everything I see / reminds me of the way things used to be / though I move forward in time / the past lives on in my mind / I'm chasing the Twentieth Century." Similar to Hayden's personal pining, the band seems to be chasing the emotion of Johnny Cash and the feel of the Rolling Stones' bluesy country flavor off Let It Bleed." -Northeast Performer Magazine