GRAND NATHANIEL & THE GHOSTS
started in 2016 - based in Lafayette, LA
For all his singing about light and fire, J Burton is most comfortable in darkness. He’s a long-suffering songwriter — going on 20 years and counting — with a knack for a pessimist’s nostalgia, preferring to cast the amber of the past as faded glory.
His latest mask, Grand Nathaniel & The Ghosts, reincarnates the sound of virginity lost in the Reagan era — the dour dance beat of sexual ambivalence, the phony sweep of synth strings and organs, misfired drum machines, the raw edge of jaded guitars.
Backed by long time collaborators Brycen Gaddis, Ian Guidroz and Jim Kolacek, Burton’s turn as Grand Nathaniel & The Ghosts revisits the landscape of his misspent youth on the early frontiers of alternative rock.
Burton cribbed his artistic cues from years living in the fallout era of post-R.E.M. Athens, Ga., picking through the ashes of the southern American underground to find the scribblings of obscured legends like Pylon and The dB’s. Grand Nathaniel begins in the 1990s and works backwards, traveling from Athens up the East Coast on a reverse musical timeline, taking in the post-hardcore, prog positivity of DIY Washington D.C. (Trans Am) and the chipped-tooth chic of disco punk New York City (ESG, Liquid Liquid).
Grand Nathaniel’s No Wave revivalism shoots out the lights, blacks out the ball, and hands the party over to the punks. There’s a cloud hanging over the disco floor, and that’s the way they like it.
j burton - vocals, guitar
brycen gaddis - keys
ian guidroz - bass
jim kolacek - drums
“We’ve lost count of the number of bands started by J Burton, who stakes a mighty claim to be Lafayette’s most prolific songwriter....Burton’s latest outfit, Grand Nathaniel and The Ghosts, builds onthe former Dire Wood frontman’s interest in angularity, cultivated by the angsty dance-pop of FIGHTs. Burton’s signature yearn remains in tact” -Christiaan Mader, The Current
“This dance rock group is one of the hottest bands to emerge from Lafayette with influences from the late 70's alt disco era.” -Downtown Alive, Lafayette LA
"GN&TG are an eclectic group of musicians, with eclectic tastes. Together though, they're unified in their goal to create music that can be consumed, and enjoyed. Mixing the older styles with the modern, this dark disco dance band delivers on striking the balance of delivering seemingly minimalistic and compelling tunes." -The Lafayette Compass