Behind the wailing ‘Robert Plant-esque’ voice is lead singer Josh Kiszka, his twin brother, Jake, on guitar, younger brother Sam on bass and childhood best friend, Danny Wagner on drums. Unexpected from the hard rock sound of Greta Van Fleet is the age of the group; the twin brothers are a ripe age of 21 and Sam and Danny are both 18-years-old. Quite surprising when you hear the roar from Josh and the hearty notes from the rest of the crew.
Despite their young age, the band has been together since 2012 and started playing cover songs in biker bars around the age of 13, while exploring the sounds of the 70s. In the small town of Frankenmuth in Northern Michigan, known for its Bavarian Riverboat tours and ‘largest Christmas store in the world,’ the Kiska brothers saw the name of a local woman, ‘Gretna Van Fleet,’ in the newspaper and thought that it would be a cool name for a band. They removed the ‘n’ in the name, making it raw and native to their roots.
Their sound is something that separates them from current genres and is both fresh, yet reminiscent of the music that captured the feelings of a generation that us millennials wish we lived, and baby-boomer wish they could re-live. Releasing their first EP in November of 2017 labeled “From the Fires” put them as the No. 1 album on the U.S. Hard Rock charts as well as capturing the No. 35 spot on the U.S. album list.
But it doesn’t stop there. The band got their first big award from Loudwire Music as the best new artist of 2017. As rising talent, the four boys are embarking on a sold-out North American Tour in 2018 which includes the appearance in festivals and solo shows alike.
Their look is something that compliments their sound sincerely. It is hard to ignore the spirited lead singer, Josh, with a rangy wardrobe consisting of grunge looks to African tribal wear under his full head of roughly highlighted hair. Sam, the bassist, struts his bare feet when they perform. Maybe he is more in touch with the beats and vibrations? Who knows, but it works. Jake and Danny seem like more of the t-shirt and skinny jeans kind of guys, which every great crew needs.
The twins conducted an interview with Billboard Music, where they stated they are largely influenced by Jimmy Hendrix and John Denver and their hate for new music and what musicians are trying to do these days. But fans just can’t get over the resemblance to the sounds of 1995 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame inductee, Led Zeppelin.
Josh suggests listening to the song “Black Smoke Rising” first, to get in touch with their sound, while Jake thinks “Safari Song.” I say listen to the whole album; you won’t regret it. It is refreshing and something that you can impress your friends with before they make the top of all charts, mark my words.
Published By: Stephen Dumnich