Life Saver E.P. released....
With the release of "Life Saver - Three Fifths Of A Third EP", Jam Records Recording Artists Third Of Never offer a taste of their forthcoming full-length release as well as solo tracks from Third Of Never-related projects. The "Life Saver" ep is available for purchase in CD and digital download formats (see www.thirdofnever.com).
Formed in 2006, Third Of Never was originally a quartet consisting of Jon Dawson, CJ Grogan, Vince Grogan and Kurt Reil. After Reil expressed his desire to get out from behind the drum kit to focus on singing, the band sought out and landed former Buzzkill drummer Mike Polilli. The "Life Saver" single is the first Third Of Never release to feature Polilli on the skins.
The opening track "Life Saver" is the first Third Of Never release since their debut album "Moodring" was nestled firmly in the top ten of the national college charts alongside acts such as The Black Crowes and Maceo Parker in 2008.
Since the release of "Moodring", (which featured guests such as John "Rabbit" Bundrick of The Who, Kristin Pinell Reil of The Grip Weeds and Dennis Diken of The Smithereens), Third Of Never have performed shows in New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia. A track from "Moodring" was chosen by film music supervisor John Houlihan (of the Austin Powers movie series among many others) for inclusion in the upcoming film "A Good Old Fashioned Orgy", which features Saturday Night Live favorite Jason Sudeikis and "Miami Vice" star Don Johnson.
The rest of the ep is comprised of solo material by Third Of Never members CJ Grogan and Kurt Reil. Reil is best known for his membership in The Grip Weeds and his production work for artists such as The Smithereens and Captain Beefheart guitarist Gary Lucas. Grogan emerged as a solo artist at the turn of the decade after stints in The Phantom Five , Grievous Angels and The Christophers - bands that also featured Vince Grogan.
CJ Grogan's tracks ("Tracer" and "Margaret") will also be part of his upcoming solo album entitled "Cathedral". Kurt Reil's "Gonna Find My Way" and "Wake Up Time" are exclusive to this ep release.
Work on the new Third Of Never album - with Bundrick again in tow - continues. As of this writing, the band has completed primary recording for 12 new songs and instrumental pieces.
On a brief hiatus from recordign the next record and working on some side projects. Getting ready to release an e.p. with two songs from the upcoming record along with songs by Third of Never and Kurt Reil (finally solo!). Should be out in August and will let you know when it is available.
Also working on a side project with Jon form TON and yes my nephew Conor titled 'Radiosonde' . Leaning more towards electronic with some interesting contributions from friends. Hopefully will be out some time in the Fall.
Just found out that many of you may not be able to see me as my domain name was snatched up by some strange Japanese conglomerate web monster. It lapsed one day and yes, someone bought it. All thingsCJ will now be at www.cjgrogan.net, unitl such time that I can pry my domain name back.
Just released 'The Watercourse Way' Collection on Come Sunday, should be avaiabkle on i-Tunes in the next month and is avaiable for purchase through cjgrogan.net
Working on some more CJ Grogan solo stuff, completed 'Margaret' and 'Tracer' for the combined e.p. with Kurt Reil (solo Gripweed) and Third of Never, stuff sounds awesome and is a good taste of the things to come..
In my infinite down time, decided to re-release a collection of early stuff "The Watercourse Way' harkening back to my acoustic days with a lot of really cool demos and odds and ends, should be ready for release by late Spring on Come Sunday.
Will be sidelined for a while as my shoulder decided that it did not want to be connnected to my arm any more. Surgery coming up and some significant down time...working on a side project 'Radiosonde' (electronic) with some good friends, looking like a release next year, keep you posted
Putting in some time on the next Third of Never record while working on some solo stuff. May be doing some shows this fall...
Working on some CJ Grogan solo stuff, looking like it will translate to a full length record, just finished basic tracking for four new songs.
CJ Grogan solo show @ the Court Tavern May 8th with Tall Days. Been quite some time since we played Hub City, so looking forward to visiting some old stomping grounds
Doors open at 8, $8 cover....
Workingon some new solo material and looking at releasing a 5 song EP later this year.
CJ Grogan solo show @ Asbury Lanes Oct.23rd with good friends the Lost Patrol and the Successful Failures! Doors open at 8, $8 cover....
Just announced CJ Grogan solo show @ Asbury Lanes Oct.23rd with good friends the Lost Patrol and the Successful Failures!
CJ working on some new material with Jon and Kurt for the next TON record.
CJ Grogan solo show @ Asbury Lanes May 22nd with old friends the Mod Fun, and the Lost Patrol. Doors open at 8, $8 cover....
Upcoming CJ Grogan solo show @ Asbury Lanes May 22nd with old friends the Mod Fun, and the Lost Patrol. Special guests planned for this one!
CJ playing with Third of Never, The Gripweeds, and the Dough Boys @ Asbury Lanes, doors open at 8 pm, $8....
Yet another show coming up with the Third of Never . This time we will be playing Asbury Lanes Jan. 23rd with the Gripweeds, and the Dough Boys.
CJ playing with Third of Never NYC IPO festival at Kenny's Castaway's. TON goes on at 8:30 sharp, so be there or be sqaure as they say.
Another show coming up with the Third of Never . This time we will be playing the 2008 NYC IPO festival at Kenny's Castaway's on Nov 8th. TON goes on at 8:30 sharp, so be there or be sqaure as they say.
CJ will be playing with side project the Third of Never at the Annex in NYC on Sept 5th at the The Annex - New York, NY. They'll be doing songs from their new release 'Moodring' on Jam Records. May be a CJ song snuck in there as well so be sure to check it out.
Basic tracks for 'Cathedral' are underway, with some interesting things being worked on. Will try and post a sample upon the My Space pageto give everyone a sample of things to come.
CJ is currently working on a new album tenatively titled 'Cathedral'. This is a marked depature from the more electrically influenced 'newsongtoo' with a more ethereal and acoustic sound. There are already a few tracks recorded with more to come over the Spring into Summer. CJ may even come out of seclusion to do a show or two.
Fake Chapter just released a new digitial comp "Downloading Is Fake V.2 " avaible on eMusic, i-Tunes and most of your other digital stores. n alternate take of "Somewhere Along the Way (from Cathedral), as well as, "December" (the Christmas song that would not die) are inlcuded. So support indie labels and buy it.
Kinston Free Press (enctoday.com)
May 26, 2011
Classic album: Newsongtoo
Artist: CJ Grogan
Label: Fake Chapter
Rating: 5 stars out of 5
As a member of The Phantom Five and The Grievous Angels, CJ Grogan established himself as a respected member of the east coast garage rock revival of the late 1980s/early 1990s. When those bands ceased to be, Grogan set out on a solo career.
While Grogan's output in the aforementioned bands could easily fall under the category of raucous rock and roll, there were other forms of expression bubbling just under the surface of his muse. After a period of exploring acoustic-based music, in 2004 Grogan released the multi-faceted "Newsongtoo."
Fans of Grogan's early rock songs were immediately drawn to stompers such as "Truth behind My Lies" and "Colourblind," both of which hurdle violently forward thanks to the driving bass work of brother Vince Grogan and the drumming of album co-producer and Grip Weed member Kurt Reil. Both songs evoke the ghosts of "Lifes Rich Pageant"-era R.E.M., but Grogan's smooth vocal style and fiery guitar work combined with the demolition approach of the rhythm section is not so much an homage as an improvement.
The solo performance "The Once in a While" shows that Grogan can be compelling when armed with only an acoustic guitar and his voice, the sparseness of which is bookended by the space-out balladry of "Thrashing Doves" and the shimmering Brit-pop of "Turning the Beat Around," the latter of which features superb vocal harmonies from Reil.
The largest departure from Grogan's previous work is the lush, pop masterpiece that is "Bacharach,", which features Grogan's stellar piano work along with a saxophone solo from Frank Slingerland that would make Sonny Rollins proud. Whether you call it a fresh take on the familiar or just a superb song executed perfectly, "Bacharach" is the type of song ears were invented for.
While "Newsongtoo" features many styles, it's the originality of CJ Grogan that holds everything together in a cohesive package. In the tradition of Elvis Costello and Daniel Lanois, Grogan is able to effortlessly fuse his vision with any number of styles, and that's the sort of thing that can keep an audience interested for the long haul.
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 23, 2008
I met CJ Grogran at IPO New York and foud his set pretty good, so afterwards his agent gave me a copy of his CD "newsongtwo." Co-Produced by Kurt Reil of The Gripweeds, who plays drums on the tracks here as well, Grogan has the talent that carries a lot of these classic rock and roll styled songs. There are hints of The Beatles, Smithereens, The Gripweeds, and even Bob Mould in his influences.
The album spans many different moods and approaches. A great example is "Go" with expansive guitar and organ that builds to it's dense chorus of gentle harmony and swirling guitar melody. Vocally he's a bit like Steve Winwood and he pounds the piano keys and bares his emotions on "Thrashing Doves," but the mood lightens on the pop tribute "Bacharach" where the classical pop piano contrasts well with his mellow vocal, and with the horns here it's reminiscent of Terry Kath-era Chicago.
I appreciate the wonderful contemplative acoustic guitar and sitar on "Fall Down on Me," as opposed to the hard rock sound of "Colourblind" which sounds less distinctive here. So what follows on the album is some nice memorable tracks ("Painted Line") followed by artistic wanderings ("The Once In A While" and "NewSongtoo") and then some straight forward power pop ("Turning The Beat"). So you have an album that has a bit of everything, like a box of Whitman Chocolates - you're never sure what you'll get; either something soft and sweet or dark and nutty (jeez! enough with the candy metaphors). More often than not you're enjoying the precise musicianship and melodic touches of brilliance on display.
May/June 2004 #42
New Jersey-based CJ Grogan is an old-school power popper. Occasional flashes of the blue collar rock of the Smithereens and Richard X. Heyman’s British Invasion-inspired classicism show up here and there, no doubt at least partially because of the presence of the producer/drummer Kurt Reil and bassist Vince Grogan with Heyman and Smithereens guitarist Jim Babjak’s side project Buzzed Meg. But the best songs are those where Grogan allows himself to stretch the parameters of the style a bit, such as the hypnotic piano-based title track, which vaguely recalls the lighter moment of Big Star’s Sister Lovers but is otherwise the most unique and endearing song on the album. Grogan cheerfully acknowledges his influences- there are songs called “Thrashing Doves” (apparently after the 80 UK proto-shoegazers) and “Bacharach”, but Newsongtoo is best when it expands beyond them.
As the songs on CJ Grogan’s “Newsongtoo” progress, Grogan’s voice morphs to meet the challenges the songs request; heavy and rough becomes thoughtful and calm within the album’s thirteen tracks. Consider Grogan a jack of all trades, gaining experience and providing some insight.
Grogan comes across broad and confident in “Truth Inside My Lies,” the song of a toe tapping rock variety. Acoustic guitar leads into the focused and slow to mid tempo “Go,” its chorus’ made of a gently blended harmony. Grogan’s vocals are strong on “Thrashing Doves,” covering an expanse with a sigh as piano chords pulse in the background. “Chalk Circle” is rhythmic, banjo adding texture and interest before a bright chorus while “Bacharach” has more of a mellow, jazzy sound that is inviting and poppy. Driving rock and roll, “Colourblind” is straight forward and up tempo compared to the tranquil “Fall Down on Me,” an acoustic guitar and vocal led tune that is accented with understated sitar in the background. Grogan, awkwardly, goes easy listening on “Painted Line” as “The Once in a While,” solely acoustic guitar and vocals, uses quick instrumentation as unrushed vocals are added. Upbeat and poppy, “Turning the Beat” is driven by blended harmonies, sounding like it could be a sitcom theme song. Familiar and rhythmic, “Some of My” sounds vaguely like a Ryan Adams inspired rock and roll track. Grogan really focuses on the soft and intense “Newsongtoo” and the nice piano ballad, “Sort of a Lullaby.”
Grogan touches, sometimes briefly, on a number of styles on “Newsongtoo,” coming across with a polished, clean sound. It is difficult to determine this singer/songwriter as he goes rock one moment and showcases his conventional piano skills the next. And then there is that vague hint of Grogan’s influences which add a familiar feel to his music.
I like it! This is a great example of good song writing, both lyrically and melodically. Amazingly, I like every song… The vocalist is good. He reminds me of the Smithereens or the Lemonheads.
….Over all, I like this CD and recommend it highly.
Rating 4 Stars
Grogan's sound, for some reason, generally reminds me of Travis. He's got a collection of classic rock-and-roll tunes mixed with Tom Petty/Pink Floyd dreamy songs. The songwriting is abstractly upfront, and his voice is of a past era. His best tracks are the somber ones, such as "Some of My" and "Fall Down on Me”…a decent collection of mellow music.
Grogan is a talented enough musician to pull off this risky "borrowing" approach to pop music; he even has a few good ideas of his own, like the droning sitar that adds texture to the thick, heady "Fall Down on Me", or the resounding chords that tamper with the title track's intimate, Zen-like calm. As long as he's not faceless or forgettable or using too much wah-wah. Grogan gets away with wearing his influences proudly. His most confident songs suggest that he might even leave them behind some day.
Richard X. Heyman (Journeyman Singer/Songwriter/Recording Artist)"With all the talk regarding 'the next big this' and 'the trendy new that', what do you say about someone truly talented like CJ Grogan? Well I say 'wow!' A few other words come to mind, like soulful, emotional, diverse and totally rewarding. Newsongtoo, skillfully co-produced as well as powerfully drummed by the Grip Weeds' Kurt Reil showcases Grogan's massive instrumental prowess on guitar and keyboards. But as with all the best rock and roll, it's the singing and the songs that really matter, and let me tell you CJ Grogan delivers the goods with this stunning debut." -