South Jersey soundscaper C.J. Davis is a master of vibe and mystique. Under the banner Harrowgrove, he caught our ear in 2015 with the warped electronic tones and haunting-but-poppy vocal melodies on HOLY BROKEN FREE SPIRIT. At the time I called him a “captivating mix of Drake and Trent Reznor” — which wasn’t entirely inaccurate, though a bit reductive in retrospect. With the release of this year’s CAPS LOCK, he jettisons the pop leanings of his debut and doubles down on its raw, eviscerating industrial rock.
“I mean, I could make a whole record of Drake-sounding stuff if I wanted to,” he explained while setting up for his Key Studio Session. “But that’s not what I’m interested in doing.” Continue reading →
C.J. Davis’ Harrowgrove project has been steadily dropping music for a few years now, drawing from industrial, alternative R&B, trip hop, and more. It’s taken on many forms since its inception, but with Davis’ guiding hand, each release has maintained the nocturnal, occasionally creepy quality that makes Harrowgrove what it is. His newest full length, CAPS LOCK, is no exception. Continue reading →
About a year ago, New Jersey native C.J. Davis, AKA Harrowgrove, shifted from industrial rock to industrial R&B with 2015’s Holy Broken Free Spirit. He continued that trend earlier this year with The Chandler In The Room EP,and he already has a new album on the way. CAPS LOCK will be out next Groundhog’s Day, but for now, check out its first single, “3AM// The Descent.” Continue reading →
Philly soundscaper and songwriter Harrowgrove grabbed our attention with his debut record last year – he’s a captivating mix of Drake and Trent Reznor, and he’s kind of restless at that. September’s Holy Broken Free Spirit was followed up by a string of noir-ish music videos, and followed again by an EP called The Chandelier In the Room. And now, main man C.J. Davis returns with a standalone jam called “What You Wanted.”Continue reading →
Trip-hop rhyme-master Harrowgrove performs tonight at Bourbon and Branch. He just released a music video for his song “Sugar”, and plans to release the follow-up to Holy Broken Free Spirit next month. Also performing will be Milton and The Means. For tickets and more information, check out the XPN Concert Calender.Continue reading →
Last time we checked in with Harrowgrove in his video for “All You Need Is Luck”, he stole a car from a gas station that had an unexpected passenger in the trunk. Yesterday, he shared the next video in his series, this time for the song “Sugar.”
The video for the Holy Broken Free Spirit track portrays the MC in a hotel room with a girl, who we can assume is who he found in the trunk of the stolen car. According to Facebook, HG will be releasing his new album next month as well, so stay tuned. Continue reading →
The video portrays Harrowgrove (C.J. Davis) and his journey from waking up in the middle of the woods to stealing a car at a nearby gas station. It creates a mess of confusion which eventually leads Davis down a dark path. Continue reading →
Harrowgrove is the project of alternative R&B artist C.J. Davis and was one of John Vettese’s Top 5 music discoveries of 2015. Originally a guitar-based band, Davis slowly transformed Harrowgrove into music with intense soundscapes and trap influences with his release last September, Holy Broken Free Spirit. Davis will be bringing the music of Harrowgrove to Bourbon and Branch tonight with Starwood, Kim Jong Ill, and Revolution, I Love You. The show is $10 at the door and is 21+. Information can be found here.
Year-End Mania is the Key’s annual survey of the things below the surface that made 2015 incredible. To kick off the series, Key editor John Vettese recaps five of his favorite Philadelphia music discoveries from the past 12 months.
You know it’s been a solid year of Philly music when squeezing it into a list of five feels like an injustice. True, I review the scene every year at the start of our #YearEndMania series, and yes, it’s almost always an “incomplete” list. But this year in particular, it could have handily been fifteen or twenty discoveries instead of merely five, and reeling the number in today was totally a challenge.
Some general observations: Philadelphia had a higher-profile musical year than ever before. A slate of solid releases emerged from the 215, from the amazing Painted Shut from Hop Along, which topped our critics’ poll yesterday, to Kurt Vile’s dreamy latest b’lieve i’m goin’ down; heavy rock and roll by The Districts and an ace live album from Dr. Dog; a hotly anticipated return from Meek Mill (hopefully that Drake beef didn’t do too much damage to his rep); timeless offerings from Jazmine Sullivan and Jill Scott; and so much more. Then there was the amount of attention Philly recieved from the outside world, including Stereogum’s scene report in June – it got a mixed reception in musician circles, but it was nonetheless cool to see those guys watching us from afar. We also saw increased coverage of Philly musicians in Impose, Noisey and Brooklyn Vegan, all the way up to Rolling Stone (which freakin’ loves them some Alex G.).
It’s all exciting stuff, but those artists I mentioned are doubtless very familiar to our regular readers at this point. With this in mind, I set my sights back to January to remember the names and faces that were pretty much new to me over the course of the year, or new-ish but making a big impression. Looking over the five, my listening habits were clearly eclectic but notably on the downbeat side. But don’t cast this crop of emerging musicians as mellowed-out, maaan – they may be quiet on the surface, but each works on a very nuanced level, delivering intoxicating tones and intricate textures that teeter on the verge of exploding. In many cases, that’s what they ultimately do, in a sonic sense, and next year I’m hoping to see some of these artists explode in that other cool kinda musical way: their profile. Let’s dig in. Continue reading →