Rob McGregor played with several of the underground bands that were part of the emergence of the Gainesville, Florida music scene. He is a veteran of acts such as the Moles, the Boozers, Noise 13, Tone Unknown, Grain, and currently The Damn Wrights. His songs carry the torch of the song writing tradition. McGregor is also known as a recording engineer and/or producer to many emerging and legendary bands such as Hot Water Music, Whiskey and Co., Rumbleseat, Radon, As Friends Rust, Asshole Parade, Against Me!, and Grabass Charlestons. A shimmering mix of Hank Williams and Paul Westerberg, the prolific McGregor is a country-punk with a startling alter-ego as a reflective tear-in-yr-beer acoustic renegade. --Chris Weingarten Detours Maagazine Rob is the singer-guitarist behind Gainesville's Grain (and before that, the Moles) who has had a hand in the recording of a very large chunk of this town's punk rock and alternative records. Grain, and Rob's solo work, is hard to quantify -- hard rock with almost equal doses of alt-country and punk might put you in the ballpark, but still doesn't really do it justice. Rob's last solo release had a goodly portion of tear-in-my-beer old school honky-tonk type country, with the remainder being rock that Grain fans would have been comfortable with. Valentine is more a rock record, even though the themes of lost love and life on the outside continue. This stuff is so good, accessible without being trendy, I don't how to explain why you can't turn on the radio without hearing it. And 'My Hand' is the funniest 'love song' you've heard in years. Includes chords so you can play along at home! Highly recommended. --Brian Kruger Ink 19 The sometimes-melancholy, sometimes-cheeky Rob McGregor is a Gainesville institution, whether as a Hank Williams-via-Johnny Thunders acoustic folkster or as country-punk ringleader with blisteringly rambunctious miscreants Grain. --Independent Florida Alligator Rob McGregor has a voice that would be great for country music. His twang would fit right in with the Nashville sound. Instead, McGregor has chosen a somewhat more difficult path. His style, which I suppose radio programmers might call 'Adult Alternative' or a similar hokey term, is an apt description, perhaps not being his obvious choice. McGregor's November 5 acoustic show at Common Grounds Coffeehouse in Gainesville, Fla., showed off his storytelling and songwriting style. The unplugged solo setting allowed him a more mournful tone than what comes through on his studio work. Lighter songs like 'My Hand,' however, showed his sense of humor. McGregor's connection with the audience was strong. The pared-down setup helped a lot in this department, but his often-tormented voice and lyrics were the real hook. At times, his sound was more folksy or bluesy, but never with so drastic a change as to lose the crowd. There is a different atmosphere to McGregor's albums than to his acoustic show. The electric songs sound just as at home at a party as their unplugged counterparts did in an intimate, melancholy coffeehouse. The studio work covers a wider range than what would have been appropriate for the show I saw, encompassing punk as well as jazz, blues and folk. All of McGregor's material, however, conveys a charming honesty. Check out Rob McGregor's MP3 here and his extensive collection of songs on mp3.com. --Denise Ryan Hardroad.com Rob McGregor - 'Valentine' --new CD from the leader of Gainesville veteran outfit Grain, reminds me of Neil Young and Crazy Horse at their most distortion-drenched. --Ivan Osorio of Sick Dick and the Volkswagons.
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