These guys have been kicking around Columbus, Ohio for over ten years now and though I've heard OF them this is the first time I've heard them. Even though their mailing address is in the southern regions of the "midwest" ya might wanna check yr map to make sure cuz Grafton do make some type of Rust Belt Rocket Racket. Granted, A LOT of dudes go out and learn a song or two off 'Raw Power', have their girlfriend carry a Von Dutch handbag, talk about taking a trip to Sweden in conversation at the bar and MIGHT (as in very rare cases) drop a Radio Birdman reference in some such conversation too but when they get done with their set a good portion of the crowd leaves thinking "Nice pose" and not much else.
It's like those accountants, real estate agents, insurance salesmen and regional director who live on the north end of town who go out and buy Harley's to get in touch with their wild side. They got the bike, the boots and the pants...oh and that CD they bought at Best Buy called "Road Songs" so they can jam out to the Allman Brothers "Rambling Man" and "Born To Be Wild" by Steppenwolf for the 100,000th time in their lives. When they pull up at a red light with decked out in their custom touring package set-up next to a bike the same model as their years but at least a decade older and stripped down as far as it can to still be considered street legal they shout over to the guy "Are you in the restoring phase?" They get a scowl and the bird flipped to them in return. Fancy bike guy thinks he got some type of One percenter approval...then it's off to the Folk-n-Blues festival (where it ain't really folk or blues) up in that summer resort town. Maybe they stand by someone who proclaims themself as the local "father of the counter culture" and he bust out some poorly rolled and crumpled pin joint, lights it up and offer then a toke. Then they'll take about toppling corporations but then get bummed cuz the nearest Starbuck's is 70 miles away.
Consider Grafton the "barely street legal ride" in such a case as the above. They burn the gunk out the carb the old fashion (and most fun) way. That's right...Running that motor fast and hot-not by spraying some stuff in there and letting it sit overnight. Hear the straight pipes make a guttural howl as these guys run it full throttle akin to the greasy t-shirt and jean blasts of hate of the Mud City Manglers, the Supersuckers if they never made another record after "Smoke Of Hell" (well...maybe not the best example. It doesn't sound like anyone in Grafton ever played in a glam-metal band before they started deciding "punk rock" was cooler) or something like Sonic's Rendezvous Band wound tighter than thought possible. Yeah, there's guitar licks abounds but not a "check out my bad ass-ness"..."I will kick your ass" is more the case. Every once in awhile they slow it down to a dustbowl crawl of contempt for assholes (ie: 98% of the people in this world) smirking while they watch it all die in in the summer sun of a once thriving industrial town wasteland but then it's back to laying rubber down on streets overgrown with weeds and the smell of desolation and exhaust in the air. It can make most cough and wheeze but with Grafton it sounds like they've been breathing it so long that fresh oxygen would have a negative effect.