Prior to listening to Omaha band Gallivant, frontman Sam Hayes warns us to “strap on your boots and prepare for an adventure.” Indeed, the trio have conjured up the kind of face-melting riff-led rock that’s so good it should carry a warning to strap in tight before embarking on the musical journey.
The latest installment of this adventure is their second album Celestials, which was released earlier this year. From it, the band sent us the deliciously fuzz-fuelled Landmarks to tantalise our tastebuds.
A big drum roll opens up, then a low fuzzy riff alongside a funky high-pitched lick, which drops into a plodding opening verse. Big guitar chords come in under drawn-out vocals, then the riff and lick return and drop into another verse. Then it all gets seriously heavy, with a lively riff over big dramatic vocals. Check it out below:
A personal favourite from their album is the huge Evaluated, which opens up with a light riff that soon bursts into a heavier burst of guitar chords and lively drums. Big vocals take over with cries of “I go to work five days a week, Working for the bills I pay, You’ve got me feeling all wrong, That’s why I’m singing this song” intersected by bursts of guitar.
Another smash of guitars drop into a second verse, which builds up to a big singalong chorus of ” Evaluated, You’ve got me all wrong, Evaluated, That’s why I’m singing this song, Evaluated, You’ve got me sayin’, Never feel the same after you’ve been, Evaluated.” A huge guitar solo drops into call and answer stabs of guitar, then chugging guitar chords feed into a lively final chorus to bring the song to a heavy ending. Give it a listen below:
While Let’s Get Weird is as good as the song title suggests it ought to be, opening up with an awesome stabbing riff that jumps back in regularly. Check it out below:
The album is chocked full of lively guitar-driven rock, including the epic guitar solo on third track Tapestry, and it’s well worth a listen. We had a chat with Sam to get us prepared for this musical adventure. Read on below…
GR: Who are Gallivant?
SH: “Gallivant is a riff-based party style rock band out of Omaha, NE. We formed in 2015 and have been melting faces ever since. Me and Josh (Craig, drums) have been in bands together since 2010. Then at IWCC in Council Bluffs, IA, we met and asked bassist/vocalist Joe Donnelly to join the band. The songwriting and music has been popping out ever since.”
GR: You just released Landshark. What should people be expecting from the song?
SH: “People should expect a bassline so fuzzy and dirty that the vibrations will be stuck deep in your ears with catchiness for months to come.”
JD: “Landshark is a song inspired by toxic love. You become entranced by this person, trying to do everything you can to catch them, all the while ignoring the gruesomeness of who they really are. What you thought was innocent turned out to be a predator and suddenly you’re trapped in their wave.”
GR: How would you describe your sound to people that haven’t listened to you yet?
SH: “This is always a tough question. We definitely have classic rock and 80’s metal influences in our sound. But also have a more modern/pop style rock sound in our melodies. I’d go for, like I said earlier, upbeat riff-based party style rock and roll.”
GR: What influences you to write music? Any key themes or topics that you write about?
SH: “Lots of different things influence Gallivant. We sing a lot about life and how life experiences make us feel and how they’ve shaped who and how we are as human beings. Sometimes they’re just downright silly. And sometimes they’re just a fictional story about someone else.”
GR: Which bands/musicians are/have been your strongest musical influences?
SH: “For me personally, I’d have to say Led Zeppelin, Thin Lizzy, Black Sabbath, AC/DC, Ozzy Osbourne. But more recently modern bands such as Royal Blood, Highly Suspect, White Denim, Post Animal and many more.
“Joe is influenced by Funk and Rock music such as Vulfpeck, The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nirvana, Rage Against the Machine, and Royal Blood as well. Josh throws it for a loop, he is into a LOT of different music. When he was younger he loved death metal music like Whitechapel and Job for a Cowboy now he is into rap/trap music of all sorts – a lot of which can be found on Soundcloud!”
GR: What have you got coming up through the rest of 2019?
SH: “We are actually taking the month of September to start writing new music for the upcoming year. We plan to record some singles for 2020 and release them throughout the year. We always have plenty of gigs to play. A lot of which are in Nebraska and Iowa. But some in Kansas and other surrounding states. We hope for a lot more touring in 2020 as well.”
GR: Anything else you’d like people to know about Gallivant/your music
SH: “Strap on your boots and get ready for an adventure. Gallivant’s music is always changing and will never sound the same as the album before. We have far too many influences and styles in our music to be limited to one specific sound or genre.”