Who is this?
Classy Mongrel is the solo project of Grant Short, a self-absorbed creationist of indie chill wave and ambient beats alike. Kentucky raised Short found his passion for music from a young age and has been writing and playing ever since, now mustering up an array of unique creations with the help of his trusty electronics. After a number of experimental EPs, 2014 marked the release of his debut album Love & Resistance, a fifteen track stormer packed with euphoric vibes. If his music is anything to go by, this is one chilled out man!
What does he sound like?
Classy Mongrel’s music is probably best described as the perfect soundtrack for looking through a kaleidoscope – a mesh of complex colours, that get more and more elaborate the longer you’re exposed to it. It’s like the point in which a dream ends, bordering between reality and fantasy. Very hippyish, I know, but perhaps ‘hippyish’ might not be too far off after all. Classy Mongrel uses a range of different sounds to accomplish this dream-like sound, with synths, effects and samples of all kinds being brought in to action.
“Too Far” off their debut album highlights Short’s ability to layer sounds in a unique and original fashion, with a repetitive twinkling synth highlighted by other funky bouncing effects as the song progresses. Classy Mongrel manages to merge together the best of three greatly different genres in dance, indie and pop with the result being surprisingly polished. A lot of electronic music suffers massively due to its repetitive nature, but Classy Mongrel never once suffers the same fate. His synths and beats are incredibly eccentric, swirling, soaring and fluttering as they take on a life of their own. Another striking track that features on the album is “My Anna Stesia”- five minutes of pure ecstasy, starting with an eerie drum machine as floating synths echo and buzz around, building up towards a dazzling ending. Short’s distorted vocals pour out for all to see in every single one of his songs, oozing heartbreak and passion.
A few words from the artist himself…
“I began as a singer songwriter with just a guitar and myself. I soon found myself wanting the fullness of sound that comes with a multi piece band. So, I taught myself synth, bass, banjo, and many more in order to be able to loop them all live and create the full sound I heard in my head. I love house music, indie rock, jazz, classical and I think you can hear all those coming through. I’m also a big fan of Toro Y Moi, Small Black, and Neon Indian, which influences my music heavily I’m sure. My new LP can be found anywhere you buy or stream your music.”
For your listening pleasure…
What’s the final verdict?
Classy Mongrel’s sound is not too dissimilar to bands such as Toro Y Moi and Purity Ring, except it pushes onwards, further in to the realms of the ethereal. It’s this trance like feeling which makes his music so compelling. He definitely has a talent for mixing together unique sounds, ranging from 80s style synths to peculiar effects, and he isn’t lacking the confidence to pull it off. Classy Mongrel puts all those other mutts to shame!
Words by Guy Arrowsmith.