Technology is a great thing. Only a few years ago a group had to consist of three to five people to make enough noise to get across. But placing that many people in close quarters, expecting them to have the same vision and dedication was a recipe for disaster. Things have changed. Now, as Jack and Meg have proven, it just takes two. That's the basic operating procedure of Annie Hardy and Micah Calabrese in L.A.'s Giant Drag.
How they got together was a bit of a lark. Like most musicians Calabrese had a day job. A co-worker mentioned she had a daughter who was a musician. "Yeah, no kidding. That's nice." Mom went home and told her daughter that she was working with a musician and maybe the two should get together. "Sure mom, whatever." Moms, however well intentioned, aren't really good at these things. But friends, they know how to do set-ups.
Hardy and Calabrese's best friends were dating, and trying, as couples often do, to spread the love, introduced the two. It was vocalist/guitarist Hardy and drummer Calabrese.
The two began working in Calabrese's home studio where they recorded a cover of Journey's "Who's Crying Now." (Note to parents: Hey look, if you're going to listen to crap - which is fine - put the headphones on, that's what they are there for! Don't play some over-emoting whiner schlock until your offspring are so entranced they take a shot at it themselves. That's just bad parenting).
Well, it became apparent that they needed a bass player. But with no bass player in site Calabrese started fooling around with a Roland synthesizer (while still playing drums). Yep, it worked. "Hearts And Unicorns" came out in '05 (with outside musicians providing bass and additional guitars). Giant Drag then hit the road opening for Stellastar.
2003 Lemona (EP)
2005 Hearts And Unicorns
2010 Swan Song (EP)
2013 Waking Up Is Hard to Do
It's evident from the lyrics on "Hearts And Unicorns" that guys messed up bad with Hardy. Her response is lethal. Hardy's airy yet often malicious vocals ride a hypnotically dense Republica/Breeders-like sound. Opening track "Kevin Is Gay" is the most evident example. With the exception of the disjointed ballad "Blunt Picket Fence," the album is both appealing and raucous.