Published Jan 01, 2006"There are times we're all helping and times when Jason doesn't have to say it we just know to get out," says Grandaddy guitarist Jim Fairchild. Those times come when singer and songwriter Jason Lytle needs to be alone for a while. In such situations, the rest of the bearded members of the Californian farm town group can simply go outside and ignite a barbecue or fish for garbage in a swimming pool. They opt not for the clinical environment of an on-the-clock commercial studio they capture their sound in an intimate recording space located in Lytle's house.
"Recorded at home' is a relative term," Fairchild clarifies. "The studio is a totally professional studio [our label] V2 gave us a lot of money to buy gear. The initial idea was to not make Jason's space over 25 percent studio leaving 75 percent living space. As we started getting more gear, and even constructed stuff in his garage, it just wound up being 25 percent domestic space and 75 percent studio."
Sumday, their third full-length, blends the rock of Weezer, the spacy psychedelic steadiness of Pink Floyd and the quirkiness of Ween playful keyboard pop splintered by skateboard punk blanketed by dreamy 70s AM radio vocal choruses (i.e., the Alan Parsons Project). Lytle's lyrics cover the spectrum of the human condition from questioning life processes symbolised through machinery to lonely heartbroken fragile isolationist melancholia to finally escaping into happiness. Suitable, then, given the subject matter, that he might prefer recording a guitar track in his own closet. "That is how a band should operate," stresses Fairchild. "In their own comfortable and distraction-free environment, so they can take the most direct path to the song and go from there. Work at our own pace concentrated work blocks of maybe two or three weeks and a few weeks of getting drunk. Well, I get drunk when I record too."