Philadelphia’s local favorite Great Time is here to save your summers yet again. This week, the wild and unpredictable trio (vocalist Jill Ryan, drummer Donnie Spackman, and guitarist Zack Hartmann) released their final EP in the ‘Sounds Like’ trilogy series. Following months of touring, playing sold-out shows with another Philly star Japanese Breakfast (killer sax skills from Jill), and much build-up media hype, the band is closing the chapter on a saga well close to their hearts. Much like the other projects, Great Time excels with its trademark signature ever-flowing musical range. In support of the EP release, Great Time released a music video for “Was I Right.”
The ‘Sounds Like’ series is something of a blueprint for young emerging bands trying to cater to the overall musical media outlets’ views. The outlets that pick apart and destroy the very fabric of what makes an indie band successful in service to “constructive criticism” end up doing more harm than good. Point blank? Great Time doesn’t give a damn what critics have to say about their sound. You would have more luck trying to 1v1 Micheal Jordan than actually trying to capture the sound and influence of Great Time.
The 3 part project allowed the band to address their long-standing criticism of the band, their refusal to pick a distinct sound. Jill Ryan spoke about the goal of the ‘Sounds Like’ series back in support of their first entry.
Says Ryan, “The idea behind this “Sounds Like” series of EPs is simple: We want to make what we want to make. We’re inspired by tons of different styles and sounds, and we feel most genuine when we’re creating music without any limitations or boundaries. The title is a response to the critiques we received on our first album. Critics have suggested that we should pick a lane or a genre, and ‘Sounds Like’ is our way of defying that while staying true to ourselves.”
On their third entry, we can spot what seems like a journey into their rock influences. At face value, Great Time offers their takes on 90s post-grunge rock while paying homage to the new wave rock that came after the birth of Fall Out Boy and All-American Rejects. As the final project in the series, the EP touches on where the band came from and how to continue that growth.
Ryan explained exactly what this project means in the realm of her own mental health.
“This EP represents the arc of my emotional processing, similar to the 5-stages of grief; it’s a coming to terms with all of my emotional parts. This EP was inspired by the music we grew up listening to: Bloc Party, No Doubt, Blink 182, Modest Mouse, Incubus, Fugazi, Yeah Yeah Yeahs… the list goes on.
Filming the music video for I Could Be was a really special experience. It was incredible to be directed by Marisa Dabice. I felt so comfortable in her presence. She commands a room not only on stage performing with Mannequin Pussy but also on set. Getting direction from her was empowering. You really have to trust the person that’s telling you what to do and how to move in order for you to perform your best and most authentically and I felt very connected and safe with her to do that. This song is a reaction to traditionality, patriarchy, “the man” and everyone that wants to make me feel small. ”
The ‘Sounds Like (Vol 3)’ is available to stream now on all music platforms.