Greys – ‘Drift’

Review by John Acres

I may be late to the party—Drift was released early last year—but after hearing it for the first time last week, meeting drummer Braeden Craig, and reading the reviews, I decided that this band needs more of the right kind of attention. I met Braeden in the “band” room of Hamilton, Ontario’s Casbah. He was warming up. Braeden clearly cares about making a great performance. Later, as singer-guitarist Shehzaad Jiwani walked in—negotiating stacks of kegs and ragged equipment cases—he dawned a similarly serious expression as I gushed over the record. The care the band puts into their live performance is captured on this EP. Drift is one of the best aggressive Canadian recordings of 2013.

After meeting Braeden and Shehzaad, I read the most popular reviews of Drift. Not surprisingly, it was praised by all three reviewers—the band scored no lower than 4 out of 5—but all three had a tone of nostalgia. Bryne of wrote, “Some more riffs and a wall of feedback later… the song sounds straight out of 1993.” Robert Ham wrote, “One of an increasing number of bands that are looking to the noise-rock pioneers of the ’90s.” Finally, Jenny Gagas wrote, “It’s difficult to hear noise rock and not immediately be thrown back into the 90s. It’s a dated-sounding genre that can make it seem a bit stale.” This EP was released in 2013; why are we pigeonholing it in the past?

Yes, Greys would likely reference ‘90s influences, among others, and it is worth mentioning, but I found the reviews missed the most important point: loud guitars and screaming never get old, only refined. This EP represents refinement of those elements. Have we become so sapped by the audio selfie that is the solo artist that we have forgotten that new sounds—made by bands—evolve and do not just materialize out of thin air? On Drift, Greys are picking up where loud left off. Not since Cursed One has an Ontario band made such a sincere and precise contribution to the scene. The band pursues a direction in which Young Widows could have gone. If anything, Greys are reminding us that loud guitars and having an axe to grind are very much in the here-and-now. Good job, boys, and thank you.

Visit Greys here ( Drift is available on Bandcamp and iTunes (