In a perfect world, it wouldn't matter what particular style a band was working in, so long as the quality of the music being produced was enough to stand on its own. But let's be honest: indie rock is fickle, and it can sometimes seem like the moment you fall off-trend, you're all but forgotten. This, of course, is idiotic, and at least part of the reason we're so smitten with Grand Rapids, a Brooklyn-based four-piece that proudly nods to a time when alt-country wasn't a dirty word. They do it without all the coal-miner posturing, thankfully, and with a healthy dose of laid-back Silver Jews-style twang rather than the more aggressive twang of, say, early Old 97s. Viewed in the context of 2011 Brooklyn, this is about as defiant as it gets.
Favorite NYC venue?
Percentage of shows played in Brooklyn vs. Manhattan?
It's split about evenly.
What New York band from the past has had the biggest influence on your sound?
We are huge Television fans.
Favorite song about NYC?
The Velvet Underground version of “Ride Into the Sun.” The city is great, but it can definitely be a sad place.
On tour for a month, what album would get the most play in the van?
Tim by The Replacements.
Ideal four-band bill, realistic:
Papa, The So So Glos, Dirty Fences, No Fun.
Ideal four-band bill, dream:
Replacements, Modern Lovers, Galaxie 500, Bruce Springsteen or The Silver Jews.
If you had to relocate to another city, where would you go?
No idea. Hoboken, so we could stay close and have something to look at.