Dallas' Glen Reynolds Sings on the New Talib Kweli Album. Listen to His Solo Album Now.
Glen Reynolds certainly has a lot of momentum behind him these days. He recently released his second solo album, Breakbeat Ice Beneath Me, but this time, he's using the moniker of Grey. While the album is a departure from the Weezer-meets-XTC vibe of his earlier material, it certainly represents where Reynolds is now. He tackles all kinds of genres, from country pop, soul, trip-hop, Britpop, and hip-hop. Yes, hip-hop. And he has some notable credibility to back that foray up.
Last year, Reynolds was featured on the Talib Kweli single, "Push Thru," which also features Kendrick Lamar and Curren$y. Kweli's latest record, Prisoner of Conscious, was finally released this year, and "Push Thru" is one of the key tracks. Reynolds might seem like an odd fit for hip-hop, but if you know a few things about his past, it's not that far of a stretch.
For the longest time, Reynolds was known as the energetic and goofy guitarist from Chomsky who also occasionally fronted Weezer and Oasis cover bands. Chomsky's new wave pop edge showed only one side of Reynolds' oeuvre. He has a deep-rooted love of hip-hop, dating back to the late '80s/early '90s, long before he dropped hard on American and British indie rock.
Plus, Reynolds has always had the kind of musical talent that's quite enviable: he can figure out almost any song from any genre halfway through hearing it. Be it Def Leppard's "Photograph" or the Geto Boys' "Mind's Playing Tricks on Me," if there's a melody, Reynolds can figure it out. That certainly is an asset when playing any kind of music.
Getting to this hip-hop fit has been rather strange and unexpected. When Reynolds released his first solo record, In Between Days, in 2007, there wasn't much traction or attention from longtime Chomsky fans. Living in Stephenville at the time, it was hard to commute to Dallas on a regular basis and practice with his backing band. His band dissolved before he moved back to Dallas the following year, but that's when things got interesting because of In Between Days.