Just Like the Fambly Cat

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Just Like the Fambly Cat
Studio album by Grandaddy
Released 9 May 2006
Genre Indie rock, space rock
Length 61:14
Label V2
Producer Jason Lytle
Grandaddy chronology
Excerpts from the Diary of Todd Zilla (EP)
(2005)
Just Like the Fambly Cat
(2006)

Just Like the Fambly Cat is the fourth and final studio album by American indie rock band Grandaddy, released on May 9, 2006 on V2 Records.

The album's title is a reference to Lytle's desire to leave his home town of Modesto, California without any fuss, stating "[cats will] do that, almost out of respect and not wanting to put people out [...] because when the family cat dies, he doesn't make a big deal about it...He just disappears".[1][2]

The album reached No. 171 on the Billboard 200 and No. 10 on the Top Independent Albums chart.[3] It reached No. 50 on the UK Albums Chart.[4] It received a positive critical reception, with critics citing the album as going out on a high point.

Recording[edit]

Jason Lytle spent eighteen months recording the album at a studio in Modesto, California.[5] Regarding the recording process, Lytle noted, "During the one-and-a-half years that I recorded this album I lost my girl, my friends, my home, estranged my family, got sober, got wasted... I got too many things going on. The band breaking up only became a reality at the end of the recording. Many songs that people claim to be directly related to the band are actually directly related to other things I had going on."[6]

The album does not feature any of the other band members, apart from Aaron Burtch who performed "most of" the album's drums.[6] Lytle chose to credit the album to the band, stating "It's much more natural to imagine a band rocking out together than it is to imagine one frustrated guy at 4:30am in his boxer shorts and messed up hair, slaving over the same keyboard part for four-and-a-half hours. I recorded and wrote all of the music and the parts (but) I didn't want to distract the listener from whatever they needed to think when they heard the music."[6]

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4/5 stars[7]
Blender 2.5/5 stars[8]
Robert Christgau A−[9]
Entertainment Weekly A−[10]
Filter 92%[11]
The Guardian 4/5 stars[12]
Pitchfork (6.8/10)[13]
Stylus Magazine B[14]
The Times 3/5 stars[15][dead link]
Uncut (favorable)[16]

Critical reaction to the album was positive. Allmusic gave the album four stars, calling it "a fine epitaph".[7] Mojo gave it three stars,[17] as did SPIN, who called it "equal parts bang and whimper".[18] Billboard commented on the albums "more personal" lyrics and called the album "a worthy coda to a woefully under-appreciated band".[19] The Boston Globe described it as "a gorgeous album that should be admired much like a fleeting sunny afternoon or a sad foreign movie viewed without subtitles".[20] The Stranger gave it a three star review, noting an "air of melancholic finality" and calling the songwriting "the best it's been since The Sophtware Slump".[21] The Guardian gave it four stars out of five, calling it "a sad record...but an inspiring one too".[12]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by Jason Lytle except Shangri-La (Outro) by Jeff Lynne. 

No. Title Length
1. "What Happened..."   2:19
2. "Jeez Louise"   3:41
3. "Summer... It's Gone"   5:30
4. "Oxygen/Aux Send"   1:08
5. "Rear View Mirror"   6:08
6. "The Animal World"   4:53
7. "Skateboarding Saves Me Twice"   3:22
8. "Where I'm Anymore"   6:07
9. "50%"   1:02
10. "Guide Down Denied"   6:32
11. "Elevate Myself"   3:41
12. "Campershell Dreams"   3:44
13. "Disconnecty"   3:34
14. "This Is How It Always Starts"   6:46
15. "Shangri-La (Outro)" (hidden track) 2:16

Personnel[edit]

Grandaddy[edit]

  • Jason Lytle - vocals, all instruments
  • Aaron Burtch - "most of the drums"

Additional musicians[edit]

  • Kevin Garcia - backing vocals
  • Rusty Miller - backing vocals
  • Lauren Goldfarb - dialogue (1)
  • Lucea Legnini - dialogue (1)
  • Lisa Klipsic - "reasurrance" (6)

Recording personnel[edit]

  • Jason Lytle - producer
  • Lucky Lew - engineering
  • Dave Trumfio - mixing
  • Greg Calbi - mastering

Artwork[edit]

  • Jason Lytle - artwork
  • Jen Murse - digital finesse
  • Adrian Mendoza - "photo help"

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gil Kaufman (21 September 2005). "Grandaddy Can't Wait To Leave Home — But They Have To Finish Telling It Off First". mtv.com. Retrieved 15 January 2012. 
  2. ^ Laura Barton (19 May 2006). "'Stuff doesn't happen unless I'm alone'". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 January 2012. 
  3. ^ "Grandaddy". Allmusic. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  4. ^ "Grandaddy". Chart Stats. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  5. ^ "Grandaddy name new album". NME.COM. 20 September 2005. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  6. ^ a b c Mike Diver (28 June 2006). "Grandaddy, from beyond the grave: Jason Lytle talks to DiS". Drowned in Sound. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  7. ^ a b Tim Sendra. "Just Like the Fambly Cat". Allmusic. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  8. ^ Blender: 137. June 2006. 
  9. ^ Robert Christgau. "Grandaddy". robertchristgau.com. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  10. ^ Entertainment Weekly: 80. 12 May 2006. 
  11. ^ Filter (19): 92. 
  12. ^ a b Dorian Lynskey (5 May 2006). "CD: Grandaddy, Just Like the Fambly Cat". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  13. ^ Marc Hogan (9 May 2006). "Grandaddy: Just Like the Fambly Cat". Pitchfork. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  14. ^ Justin Cober-Lake (11 May 2006). "Grandaddy". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  15. ^ Dan Cairns (14 May 2006). "Grandaddy - Just Like the Fambly Cat review". The Sunday Times. [dead link]
  16. ^ Uncut: 108. June 2006. 
  17. ^ "Grandaddy - Just Like the Fambly Cat". Mojo (EMAP). 2006. 
  18. ^ Keith Harris (June 2006). "Grandaddy - Just Like the Fambly Cat". SPIN: 81. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  19. ^ Bram Teitelman (13 May 2006). "Grandaddy - Just Like the Fambly Cat". Billboard: 49. Retrieved 16 January 2012. 
  20. ^ Christopher Muther (12 May 2006). "Grandaddy Just Like the Fambly Cat". The Boston Globe". p. D17. 
  21. ^ John Vettese (2 May 2006). "Grandaddy Just Like the Fambly Cat". The Stranger. Retrieved 16 January 2012.