Gretchen and the Pickpockets’ latest release, Anachronic, bends the boundaries between soul, jazz, rock and funk. Lead singer Gretchen Klempa has a suave power that evokes Rachael Price of Lake Street Dive, and Klempa’s band amps up the strength of her vocals even further with confident riffs.

The EP kicks off with “Get The Rock,” which is perhaps the jazziest song of the four. The trumpet solos at the beginning establish the technical proficiency of the group, which never falters. They take it down a notch with “Sweet Sweet Love.” It’s a bit vanilla, but solid– a comfortable rhythm to sway your hips to. “On the Mend” bleeds more into rock territory, with strong drums and heavy bass. Just when you start to settle in, however, the trumpets blast in again to change direction and you’re back to funk.

Gretchen and the Pickpockets complete the demonstration of their range by ending the EP with a seven-minute, airy ballad. Although it lacks the groove of its predecessors, “Old Souls” brings you back down to earth gently in a way that’s pleasant– it’s like dancing all night to The Chicken Slacks at the Cantab Lounge and then getting a free Uber home when you thought you’d have to take the T.

Anachronic is neat; it’s got groove and soul, and it’s clear that the choice and order of the songs is intentional. This is an EP you can both get down to and respect– a combination that’s rarer than you’d think.

Album Review: Gretchen and the Pickpockets - Anachronic
  • Good variety of songs
  • Technical proficiency
  • Danceability
  • Slower songs lack power
7Hip rocker

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