When you first look at the members of “The Grand,” all you see are four trendy Chilean kids who can play instruments. Why is that? It's because they are. But once they start talking, their passion for indie rock and self-assurance in succeeding in a nothing less than competitive industry transcends their novel and still developing sound.
Photo courtesy Andres Gleixner Langdon
Their music: catchy riffs and full of one-liners. It obviously emanates and artfully imitates their influences – they even have a touch of a British accent. They have a lot in common with bands like “The Arctic Monkeys” and “The Strokes” in most of their songs. But their song “Come Now,” surprisingly and probably unbeknownst to them, has a similarity to that of Fleetwood Mac – which shows their varied potential. But for now, most of their songs are formulaically easy to dance to, and make you want to sing along.
The boys, Seba (lead singer/guitar), Matias (drummer) and Richi (bassist) all met at UNIACC (a university in Santiago) while studying music, and later hooked up with Fernando (lead guitar) to finally form the Chilean indie rock band. Though they formed about two years ago, they only started recording, rehearsing, and performing early on this year. The fact is, that they are a hard working group of kids trying to make it in a city that doesn’t really welcome the idea of “indie.”
Though they all hail from Santiago, the majority of them have been abroad, from the UK to the States, and it shows. They speak fluent English, with a tinge of a Chilean accent and all their songs are in English. When asked why, they simply reply, “we just like it more, it sounds cooler.” Not really the profound reason that was expected.
But aside from that, it’s also because their influences are mostly from the English-speaking world, which include: “The Smiths,” “The Beatles” and “Oasis” among others. Matias further affirms his extreme zeal for rock music, “Radiohead’s OK Computer changed my life,” while clenching his teeth. Their fervor is so obviously clear and it’s no surprise why they work so hard; they just want to do what they love the most.
“We have no label, we manage ourselves and we pay for our own recording sessions. We are totally and completely indie,” Matias, the youngest band member, says avidly so that his message of the band’s diligence is totally grasped.
“There are no indie labels here. It isn’t like the States or the UK; there aren’t that many opportunities for our genre,” Seba said. Because of this, they only have one thing to do: work hard, play often and form a fan base single-handedly. And that is what they have been doing. Since their first show at the end of March, they have been playing one show per week, every week, dedicated to get their names out there.
So what is next for the band? Are they planning to branch out? “This is just a plan,” Seba says. “But, I am actually moving to the UK in the next couple of months to study music. And the band is going to move too and start playing gigs at Liverpool. We hope to get signed there.”
All this is said without trepidation, though it’s well known how competitive it is to “make it.” But obviously their confidence exceeds any doubt. So, you heard it here first: The Grand is on to grander things and relocating to the UK. So hurry and check them out before they leave!
All upcoming shows are posted on their website: