Artist of the Week: John Grant
John Grant is an American singer-songwriter from Parker Colorado, who began his career as the leader of The Czars, an alternative cult band formed in the 90s who delivered six beautifully crafted and critically praised albums before splitting in 2004.
After a six-year recording hiatus during which he found himself playing support for The Flaming Lips in some US shows, John Grant released with the help of some members of Texas folk-rockers Midlake his first solo effort in 2010. Queen of Denmark, a deeply personal record about his past struggles with addiction and his sexuality that ditched the dreamy shoegazing of his former band for an orchestrated and melodic soft rock style in the vein of 70s luminaries such as Jackson Brown, Clifford T. Ward and early Elton John, reached a rather surprising success and was selected as album of the year by the influential British magazine Mojo.
In 2012, during a performance with Hercules and Love Affair at the Meltdown Festival, he publicly acknowledged for the first time that he is HIV-positive. This pendent for serial and openhearted personal confessions would remain a paramount feature in his recently released second album. Pale Green Ghosts is a potent effort pretty much in the vein of this first record: the clean and focused production by Biggi Vieira (of Icelandic electronic pioneers Gus Gus) and abrasive 80′s electro approach are definitely novelties but they are always used in the benefit of his trademark baritone voice and undeniable talent for turning into pop gems his articulated penchant for personal bursts of anger and sadness.
João Pedro da Costa is a web studies scholar and a music fan.