Press

For the Graze – Give/Sell:

For the Graze – Iowa Anvil:

Voted #19 in threeimaginarygirls.com top 50 Northwest releases of 2004 readers’ poll.


…praise should be lavished on the Graze, the one-man project of songwriter Louis O’Callaghan. The band’s self-released debut, “Iowa Anvil,” is full of tender-hearted laments and wrenching ballads. His tentative voice holds the perfect bland of agony and restraint.
– Tizzy Asher, Seattle Post-Intelligencer. link to article (5/2004)


Excellent debut from this local one man band “the Graze” (Louis O’Callaghan). Passionate, heartfelt songs inspired by Elliott Smith or Nick Drake but with is own original voice. Great songs with the right amount of production and subtle guitar arrangement. Great debut.
– John Richards, KEXP 90.3 FM Seattle


Regardless of the inevitable comparisons and mentioning of Neutral Milk Hotel, Elliott Smith, Beck, the vague, occasional whispers of something even Beatles-like and a hum of Nirvana-sprinkled tension, The Graze navigates its way through a rugged and yet vulnerable emo landscape that’s both fresh and familiar for their audience. Revealing a simple approach, a humble, stripped-down partnership with their own creativity, this Seattle-based group’s album earns its moments of culmination, earns its peaks and transformations with ease and fluency, exposing their natural talent for conceptualizing and manifesting the elusive and abstract process of packaging emotion within song.
– CD Baby. link to article (5/2004)


….Poneman really should check out the Graze, if only because Louis O’Callaghan does such interesting take-offs on Kurt Cobain guitar phrases and howls . but mellowed down, like an emo/indie version of Nirvana. Rather than a rip-off, however, O’Callaghan “grazes” Nirvana, as well as chomping on some Beatles (a powerful influence on Cobain), Elliott Smith and Death Cab for Cutie.

Though not entirely groundbreaking (and, really, what is?), the Graze’s “Iowa Anvil” is a highly entertaining and consistently strong first full-length, recorded and distributed independently, with a July 12 release date.

The son of a State Department employee, O’Callaghan lived in Ecuador, Chile, Uruguay, Italy and Maryland before settling as a young adult in Seattle (where his father was raised). “Nirvana was definitely a huge influence, and I credit them with both turning me on to pop music and with making me want to become a musician. Until Nirvana I thought pop music was all about spandex and makeup, which seemed really dumb to me as a kid.”

On the Graze record, he played guitar, drums, bass and some keyboards. He’s still feeling his way through live shows, figuring what to rock out, and what to leave in a more laid-back arrangement. “I’ll be playing solo during my tour this summer, and when I get back I’ll probably continue doing a few songs by myself at shows before rocking out with the rest of the group.” The Graze’s next live show is July 16 at Belltown’s Rendezvous. For more information: www.j-shirt.com/thegraze.
– Tom Scanlon, Seattle Times. link to article (7/4/2004)


Another noteworthy act performing at Area 5 this week is The Graze, aka Seattle songwriter Louis O’Callaghan. The Graze’s recent debut album, “Iowa Anvil,” has drawn apt comparisons to Neutral Milk Hotel and Elliott Smith, and has earned raves from CD Baby and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

It’s a record full of sweeping, moody tracks, dressed out in fuzzed guitars and rich vocal harmonies, a kind of emo-meets-grunge affair. The tempting comparisons to other one-man bands – Beck, or Hayden, or Pedro the Lion – manage to fit just fine: This is a record that boasts a unity of spirit and a quality of craft that makes it bear up to plenty of repeated listenings.

Of course, as a one-man band, it’s likely that the Graze’s live sound won’t closely resemble the multi-instrumental, effects-laden aesthetic of the album.

But chances are, a more stripped-down approach to this music would probably serve to further highlight O’Callaghan’s voice. This is a good thing. With its rough-edged timbre and emotional urgency, O’Callaghan’s born instrument is as fine as they come.

The Graze will perform at Area 5 on Saturday, July 24.
– Joe Nickell, Missoulian. link to article (7/23/2004)


The Graze is the one man recording project consisting of Louis O’Callaghan. Iowa Anvil features an impressive combination of sincerity and talent. Songs are Mr. O’Callaghan’s main focus…and he has come up with some real beauties here. Caressed in restrained arrangements that allow the listener to concentrate on melody, these tunes possess a nice flowing quality. By avoiding the normal clouded avenues of overdubbing everything to death…this man’s simple and pure recording style is refreshing. This is not a perfect album. The louder numbers don’t work nearly as well as the softer tracks. But even with the imperfections, there are enough classic moments here to make this a highly rewarding disc. Best cuts: “Devices,” “Everything,” “Doubt,” and “Nostalgia.” (Rating: 4+++)
Babysue/LMNOP. link to article (8/2004)


The first track, “Devices,” is a study in how any song can be translated into just about any genre. Despite its presentation here as something of an alt. country wallow, the riffage and vocal melodies are straight out of grunge anthems. And many of the other songs here seem to have fallen through the cracks into this rootsy sound.

And that’s cool. The songs rarely move at faster than a mid-tempo pace, and often they drag markedly. Not exactly the sort of stuff that generally rips apart my ears. But then when something like “I Am the Little Girl” (where the Graze just says “fuckit” and launches into something akin to laptop grunge) comes along, well, I’m suddenly locked in.

These songs go every which way, as does the sound of the album. Some songs are small, intimate affairs, and others fill the walls with sound. Some pieces even manage to go both ways without tearing themselves apart. That’s an accomplishment in and of itself.

Yeah, the Graze (which is, in fact, one guy named Louis O’Callaghan) probably ought to settle down and focus just a bit. But a one-man-band isn’t going to do that. And O’Callaghan shouldn’t. Ride the waves of idiosyncrasy until they break into something truly astonishing.
Aiding & Abetting. link to article (8/2004)


The Graze
with The Bellmont and Tanuki
Sunday, Aug. 15; Atomic Cantina (21 and over, 9 p.m.): Not to be confused with Philly-based alt.rockers Graze, The Graze is Seattle songwriter and Rosyvelt member Louis O’Callaghan’s solo project. His debut,Iowa Anvil (J-shirt Records) is one of the most promising indie rock releases since Neutral Milk Hotel’s In the Aeroplane Over the Sea and one of the most inspired since Wilco’s Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. Whether or not O’Callaghan will make his Albuquerque appearance with a band in-tow (as on the record) or as a lone gunman isn’t made clear by the press release, but it’s not of much consequence, either. O’Callaghan’s songs speak for themselves and are likely to send chills crawling up your spine regardless of personnel or instrumentation. Between the Nirvana-like smolder of his melodies and Modest Mouse-like guitar figures, O’Callaghan — who counts among his influences The Shins — is primed to pick up right where Elliott Smith left off.
– Michael Henningsen, Alibi. link to article (8/12/2004)


It’s quite inevitable to compare this one man band (Seattleite Louis O’Callaghan) to Nick Drake, Elliot Smith and Grant Lee Phillips… so, there it is. I’ll also say he’s definitely got some Thom Yorke action going on, BUT, the quiet, melodic simplicity of The Graze’s debut album Iowa Anvil creates its own world, comparisons aside.

I want to start by talking about track number four, “Maudlin.” Holy lord, I have not had the hair on the back of neck stand up from a song in a long time. It clocks in at a scant 2:41, but what a slow burn. Starting with melancholic softness, he murmurs, “But what do I know? It’s all just noise without you…” He desperately pleads for lost love, without a stitch of irony, just straightforward despair. Not a song to listen to when you have just broken up with someone, unless you are a masochist, then by all means go for it. Actually, if you are really going to go for it, balls out, then listen to the whole album over and over again until your eyes are puffy, you’ve called you’re ex and hung up 17 times, you’ve lost 10 pounds from not eating and all you can think about is how good it used to be and then get really pissed about what a fucker he/she was and start the fun all over. If you are in a happy relationship, or happy about being single, you will have a different spin on Iowa Anvil. You’ll appreciate his tentative, agonized voice and the beauty of each heart-wrenching song.

This album is obviously a labor of love, figuratively and literally. O’Callaghan perfectly captures the horrendousness of a break up: the stages of anger, sadness, anger again, desperation, bitterness, sadness again, anger one more time (most likely in the form of a big, fat “fuck off!”) and finally acceptance. It is understated and simple, a perfect blend of bittersweet. The final track “Imbecile” serves as the final piece in O’Callaghan’s story… “and I don’t want to see you again.”

– Miss Michael, Three Imaginary Girls. link to article (8/12/2004)


Sad Songs Say So Much For This Unwilling ‘Loner’

Louis O’Callaghan swears he’s not a loner.

Sure, the musician has dropped out of just about every band he’s been in and now is focusing on a solo career, one that’s taking him across the country in a rental car with no other passengers.

“I’m kind of an unwilling loner. I tend to be, but I don’t necessarily want to be. It just works out that way,” O’Callaghan said in a telephone interview last week.

He called not from a hotel, nor a coffee shop, nor anywhere else people might congregate. Instead, he pulled over to the side of the road in rural Pennsylvania, next to a “very nicely manicured field.”

“I think maybe I’m a jerk. It’s hard to tell,” he joked.

It suits him. O’Callaghan, who performs under the moniker The Graze, is from the Elliott Smith school of one-man rock mopery.

“The songs I like the most are ones that are sad,” O’Callaghan said.

“Writing happy songs is really hard. The only band I can think of that can write happy songs that aren’t saccharine are The Beatles. They had a lot of really upbeat music that wasn’t just sugary and crappy, and that’s an amazing trick.

“… I still have trouble doing that. The maudlin stuff comes to me, so I write what comes to me and do what I can do with it,” he said.

O’Callaghan grew up around the world as the son of a State Department employee, living in Ecuador, Chile, Uruguay and Italy before settling in Maryland.

Near the end of his high-school tenure in Maryland, O’Callaghan felt drawn to music and learned how to play guitar.

“It wasn’t until five years ago that I started writing songs seriously – or regularly, I should say. I’ve progressed as a singer,” he said. “It took a long time to become semi-decent as a singer.”

After moving to Seattle, he joined several bands, including Utah Anvil and Summerset Frisbee. Finally, though, he had enough of collaborating and struck out on his own.

“I did it because … people who lead bands tend to be charismatic and have qualities about them that keeps people together, and I don’t quite have those qualities,” he said.

After two years of preparing work for his debut solo album, “Iowa Anvil” (available at www.j-shirt.com/thegraze), O’Callaghan took off a few weeks ago on his first tour.

“I pretty much expected it to be a trial. I expected to play to a bunch of empty rooms all over the place. For the most part, it hasn’t been that way,” he said.

“… On tour, you can’t really help meeting people, and I’m actually kind of amazed what happens when I start talking to people. I end up with places to stay at night, with directions, like from Baltimore to New York where I don’t have to pay as many tolls,” he said.

He’s also meeting other musicians and getting a new perspective on his work.

“I’ve been in my insular bubble of writing what I like in Seattle and playing it for mostly my friends and people who like this kind of music. I’ve come out of that thinking I’m hot (expletive),” he said.

“It takes hearing it through other people’s ears to find out what your niche is, and I’ve found out my niche is really narrow.”

That doesn’t necessarily hurt his shows, though.

“If my audience is there, if there are people who are into this sort of depressing folk music, I can play a great set,” he said. “I bring different emotions to each one, but the audience needs to be with me for that.”

See, he’s not that much of a loner after all.
– Chip Chandler, Amarillo Globe News. link to article (8/13/2004)


You may recall a time when it was still within the bounds of social behavior to willingly subject yourself to Conor Oberst’s pained howl. Complete credit for this period should go to his backing band; they forged a compelling musical grounding for their theoretical leader’s histrionics, drawn from rock, pop and yes, alt-country, that would never have been tossed into the emo heap were it not for Oberst’s pitiful insistence. With Iowa Anvil, one man band The Graze (Louis O’Callaghan) scoops this sound out from under Bright Eyes and runs away. Oberst’s whininess pursues him, but most of the time O’Callaghan triumphs over his self-pitying urges. The result is a strong, straightforward album that not only wants to be loved, but deserves it.

This is not emo. That point cannot be stressed strongly or often enough. O’Callaghan is a grump, but he does not self-aggrandize and he does not want our pity. Rather, he seems to be examining his own and others’ motivations pertaining to personal relations. Details are sparse, but you can draw your own conclusions from evocative lyrics like these: “It’s quite enough to whine / In contentment / On-and-on! / It’s good to place faith in love, / And betrayal / ‘Cause nobody cares to separate / Their ends from the meaning / In you.” O’Callaghan’s voice does not falter as he sings his insights. He does not moan. He remembers that this is a song, that he is playing rock ‘n’ roll, and he is putting on a show. “Devices” gives us energy rather than taking it, climaxing with the first of Iowa Anvil’s many Wilco-esque guitar solos.

“Everything” borders on whiny, but O’Callaghan preserves his dignity by grounding the lyrics and almost-moaned vocals and a carefully plucked guitar. He forces himself to build up to the really emotional moments in his performance, resulting in a beautiful payoff. “Rely” builds on this foundation beautifully, with similar but greatly embellished country arrangements and a bitter chorus: “And you can’t rely / On that you can rely. / And you can’t rely! / On that, you can rely.” The song builds to a slow, powerful guitar solo accented with tinny country percussion. “Maudlin” makes for a dramatic climax to this trilogy of songs, building on their thematic elements once more to incorporate reverse-gated guitars and O’Callaghan’s most stirring performance yet.

O’Callaghan then rocks out, incorporates his rock and country urges into “Nostalgia”, and finally settles down to another excellent triad of tunes. The absolutely adorable “Filler” lands more in the alt-country/pop end of his spectrum, decorated with pianos and accented with light snare taps. In its final third, it explodes into an addictive, all-out pop anthem; you’ll be unable to resist singing along. “Busy” takes this newfound sense of humor to its natural conclusion in a sparkly, tender song that perfectly captures the experience of loving someone, no matter how ridiculous they look. The warm glow it produces will carry you through “Imbecile” with a smile. It’s difficult to discern what conclusion O’Callaghan has come to, but it’s obvious that he has found one — one that makes him happy. Peaceful, even. “And I don’t want to see you again / I don’t want to care what you mean to me”, he sings, matter of factly. “And I think that it is / It’s going well / ’cause it’s all just a way to agree / That I don’t want to see you again.” It feels like one of those breakups where you both know things have gone too far, and now the whole thing is comical. You’re parting on unfriendly terms, and you won’t talk again. But really, that’s okay. In fact, it’s pretty funny.

Iowa Anvil has all the nuance and ugly beauty of a real person. The organ donors who allowed O’Callaghan to forge his sound should be grateful for what he’s done with their hearts; he clearly knew what to do with their innards better than they did.
– Mike Meginnis, Splendid. link to article (8/27/2004)


The cover of the Graze’s debut LP, Iowa Anvil, could be intimidating for anyone from the city; the distant, slightly unfocused, mid-western plain is contrasted only by a motionless windmill, eschewing all sound and familiarity. For Louis O’Callaghan, the one and only mastermind behind the Graze, his Seattle origins (ignoring his stays in other places such as Ecuador, Chile, and Maryland) could cause him to passively stare at such a landscape and proclaim, “I feel so much heavier than all of this.”

It is in such a mindset that this Anvil crafts the ten songs of his already touted debut. “Devices” begins the record in an acoustic-heavy lament to the many sordid ways of dealing with general pain. As such, “general pain” becomes a kind of entelechy to O’Callaghan’s work, browning the vast fields of his America, from coast to coast, into a pretty tract of sepia roots. “Rely” tumbles along a pleasantly simple strum while O’Callaghan seems captured by the wails of Neutral Milk Hotel’s gothic pastoralia. Never rushing through melodies or structural progression, the song reaches a tiny transcendence as soon as a quiet shaker’s hiss stretches the tempo to conclusion.

Iowa Anvil is peppered with splendid moments, each, in its own right, not an extraneous obstacle to the consistency of the album. And consistent this album most definitely is. Even with a number of dissonant influences readily name-dropped, from Nirvana to the Shins to Elliot Smith or Nick Drake, all of which are apparent here in the mix, genre jumping is done with marvelous confidence, honing subtlety as a method for balance. “I Am the Little Girl” struts with a drilling mess of string work, winking at the Queens of the Stone Age while bowing before Kurt Cobain’s shrine. “Doubt” sounds like Elliot Smith humping Paul McCartney’s leg, albeit while crying, and the entrance of murky thrashing behind the Graze’s verses is just brilliant. “Busy,” the best cut from Anvil, is early (Pablo Honey) Radiohead at its best, allowing organ and bells to crystallize the great tension created between layered vocal tracks.

Iowa Anvil is not a perfect album by any respects. Louis O’Callaghan does wear his influences proudly, tattooed more to his forehead than perched on his sleeve, and the somber sad-sack lyrics often reach abominable lows. Yet, there is something heavy in the Graze, a weight that may continue to pull O’Callaghan even deeper into America’s ancient soil and closer to creating a truly mesmerizing piece of music.
– dom, indieworkshop.com. link to article (8/30/2004)


(From front page: Gruff, crusty alt-country/rock/pop that suffers from an uncharismatic frontman, but is pretty good otherwise.)

Sometimes, I think that this alt-country thing isn’t ever going to go away. It has its phases, and sometimes it’s popular, and sometimes it’s not, but somehow it always survives, maintained by a dedicated core of devoted fans, who carry it through the hard times, and lift it up during the good. Much like the actual people of the countryside, alt-country music seems to bloom in isolation, and wither when surrounded by the attention of us city people.

The Graze is one such outfit, a one-man musical project from the previously unknown Louis O’Callaghan. He draws his inspiration from the lyrical bombast of Conor Oberst and Bright Eyes, and the instrumental fireworks of Wilco, producing a mixture that would be hopelessly arrogant and self-serving were it not delivered with such conviction and feeling.

O’Callaghan comes off as a grumpy old bastard for most of this album, but since there’s a fine tradition of country music artists in this vein, it’s something that you can at least understand. Unfortunately, he’s not a very charismatic individual, and rather than liking him because he’s rough and raw, you end up disliking him because he’s bitter and unpleasant. Everything is an example of this, where he treads perilously close to whining in a distinctly emo fashion. On Rely, his almost defeated, bitter tone makes you wish that he’d just shut up and resolve things himself. Luckily, on some of the later tracks, he brightens up considerably, but by that point, your mental image of him as a crabby old git is already firmly established.

He does have some other advantages though, and those are his guitar playing skills. On Devices, he lets loose with a guitar solo that isn’t fast, which isn’t technically brilliant, yet still works perfectly with the sound of the song and the mood that he’s trying to create. Ironically, for a genre that’s more noted for its lyrical content than its instrumental content, The Graze’s advantage lies in the instrumentation. It’s an advantage that is frequently exploited, both in the aforementioned solos, and in the musical backbone of songs like Filler, which is anything but.

“Iowa Anvil” is an album of solid alt-country that is spoiled by the main figure behind the music sounding so unlikable and harsh. Perhaps if O’Callaghan sounded a bit softer, I’d find this music a bit easier to get into. If you can stomach his personality though, you’ll likely find lots to enjoy here though, since he’s most definitely a very skilled and articulate songwriter and performer.
– Lauren Harding-Healy, Halo-17.net. link to article (9/15/2004)


GRAZE, THE
“Iowa Anvil” CD
There are only so many indie rock songs featuring quavering, tremulous vocals that I can handle in rapid succession. As a rule of thumb, my limit is two. There are ten songs on this record. You do the math. -Puckett
(J-Shirt) -10/8/2004 1:32:00 PM
link to article


Fri, 12/03
The Graze/Andrea Maxand/Sifaka, Aurafice
Of all the CDs we regret not reviewing this year, the latest releases by local artists the Graze and Andrea Maxand top my list. The Graze is to songwriter Louis O’Callaghan as Bright Eyes is to Conor Oberst. Remember that band on KEXP earlier this year that sounded kinda like Neutral Milk Hotel, kinda like Nick Drake, only with a bit more jangle and a Pacific Northwest edge? Yeah, that was the Graze. Good stuff. Andrea Maxand’s 2004 release Where the Words Go soars with her piercing vocal and gorgeous guitar work. “Cassies Song” . yow, it’s good. As both are pretty glorious singer-songwriters, seeing them at the intimate Cafe Aurafice (a coffehouse on Capitol Hill) should be a unique treat. {igDana}
threeimaginarygirls.com (11/2004)


Out of Seattle comes the solo project of singer/songwriter Louis O’Callaghan, The Graze. True to his Northwest roots, there are dissident melodies and chord progressions here associated with early grunge, but in an acoustic base that draws comparisons to Elliott Smith as much as unplugged Nirvana. The mainstream will not be able to sink its collective teeth into Iowa Anvil, but if you like the above-mentioned artists, or even Radiohead, you will find something you think is cool here.
www.bullz-eye.com link to article (12/2004)


The Graze – Iowa Anvil
J-Shirt Records – js01
In spite of their name, this band is from Seattle and they only owe some of their sound to local acts, such as the unplugged Nirvana vibe of “Rely.” Their influences can also range from the Beatles and Pink Floyd to Beck on their more acoustic driven, moody songs that retain highly emotive undercurrent. When the rock turns crunchier, as with “I Am the Little Girl,” you can then feel early Sub Pop vibes, but this act has its own personality, too.
Music Morsels link to article (12/2004)


An angst-fueled singer-songwriter with the damaged psyche of Elliot Smith (less so, hopefully) and Thom York-ish explosions of vocal emotion, The Graze’s Louis O’Callaghan is plowing fertile territory here, with an admirable hit-or-miss ratio. Variously throughout Iowa Anvil, the most striking characteristics are the strong melodies, the raw and scarred arrangements or the pained delivery of O’Callaghan, just not always at the same time. Sometimes folky and spare like “Imbecile” or garagey and stormy like “Doubt”, the mood is always fraught with loss and regret, often to a fault. A few of the songs sink under the weight of the dour mood, but never so much as to obscure the honesty in O’Callaghan’s voice and his unpolished guitars and drums.

The sludgy “I am the Little Girl” is most atypical of the disc, with a stoner metal riff and some acid rock leads, but the vocals still soar above it in melodramatic despair. The opener “Devices” captures the essence of Iowa Anvil best though, with the dragged out tempo befitting a depressed shut-in and the ripe melody of a songwriter who’s learning to spin his black moods into golden sounds. A real band might not hurt, nothing too slick, just a greater variety of input. All in all, a promising debut.
(J-Shirt 2004)
Review date: 2004-12-01 00:15:38 by Rusty Bidet
MusicEmissions.com link to article


This disc is a batch of fuzzed-out rock and acoustic balladeering with a sound that could only have come out of the Pacific Northwest, like a rural grunge Elliott Smith or a less-punk Nirvana (including a slight flavor of late Beatles). The Graze is one Seattle guy who plays all the instruments and does all his own recording and he does a good job, and this seems like a pretty heartfelt affair, so I give him full props for that. However, this has a kind of sound that I don’t really dig, and this album didn’t make me change my mind about that. The only track on here that I really enjoyed is a pretty song titled “Filler”, funnily enough. Oh well. (mike.01.05)
Copacetic Zinelink to article (1/2005)


The Graze: Iowa Anvil

If Neil Finn hailed from Seattle instead of New Zealand and performed his songs like they were about to leave him, this is the album he would make. In his place, we have Louis O’Callaghan, performing as The Graze. This one-man band just released its debut album, Iowa Anvil, and O’Callaghan’s debut is an edgy neo-folk effort.

Nearly every song falls into the mid-tempo range, with the only stab toward a speedier pace in “I Am the Little Girl,” an angsty number that puts a rare taste of fuzz bass into the works to good effect. O’Callaghan’s melodies work best unplugged, as things get overbearing when the electric guitars come out, a fate only “I Am The Little Girl” escapes. “Doubt,” with its flourishes and grating lyrics, falls flat, and “Filler” turns out to be an accurate name.

But simple acoustic numbers like “Everything” and “Busy” (a haunting lament about losing touch with life), redeem the few duds Iowa Anvil has to offer. For people who like well-written guitar music, O’Callaghan delivers the goods. Don’t take my word for it; see The Graze for yourself Friday, April 22, at the Riot Factory, $5.
– Brandon Nolta, Boise Weekly link to article (4/20/2005)


The Graze
Iowa Anvil
J-Shirt Records

It’s easy to feel like you’ve heard The Graze before. The vocals of one-man-band (Louis O’Callaghan) sound startlingly similar to those of the late Elliott Smith, and O’Callaghan’s musicianship on Iowa Anvil is reminiscent of Grant Lee Buffalo and, at times, Radiohead, among others. It can be hard to distinguish yourself when you’re an indie singer/songwriter with a guitar strapped over your shoulder, when it’s all seemingly been done before, but, to O’Callaghan’s credit, his sound at least bears comparison with an impressive list of predecessors.

O’Callaghan plays all the instruments on Iowa Anvil and typically tours solo as well (as he will in Missoula). His songs are intelligently composed and well produced, and his songwriting avoids cliché. His wailing vocals are sad and haunting, and on the track “Maudlin” they have an almost a frantic intensity. Aside from the grittier song “I Am the Little Girl,” which sounds like it would fit seamlessly onto Nirvana’s Bleach, Iowa Anvil plays out like a sorrowful lullaby that ebbs and surges beautifully from one sleepy, melancholy tune to the next.

O’Callaghan is not your typical coffeeshop crooner, and while many indie acts come across as whiny, O’Callaghan has an inherent ability to convey emotion in a way that’s both genuine and relatable. (Rachel Carlson)

The Graze plays Crazy Daisy Saturday, May 27, at 8:30 PM. Cover $2. Call 549-1150.
– Missoula Independent. link to article (5/25/2006)

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