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Greta Van Fleet

Raised on a steady diet of classic FM vinyl, Greta Van Fleet employ an earworm-heavy blend of hard rock and blues. Emerging in the mid-2010s while the bandmembers were still in their teens, the sibling-led group's brawny style evoked both the Who and Led Zeppelin, with the latter act looming large due to frontman Josh Kiszka's sonic similitude to Zep crooner Robert Plant. Choice placement in a 2017 episode of Showtime's Shameless drove the fiery single "Highway Tune" up the charts, and by 2018 the band was appearing on everything from The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon to Elton John's Academy Award Party. Anthem of the Peaceful Army, the group's 2018 debut album, cemented Greta Van Fleet's status as the most commercially successful American rock band of their generation, a position they consolidated with The Battle at Garden's Gate, their 2021 sophomore set. That album cracked the Top Ten of the Billboard 200, paving the way for 2023's Grammy-nominated Starcatcher, an album they recorded with top Nashville producer Dave Cobb. Raised on rock in the Michigan city of Frankenmuth -- a small town known as "Little Bavaria" and best known for Bronner's Christmas Wonderland, a Christmas paradise that's open year-round -- the brothers Kiszka (twins Josh on vocals and Jake on guitar, plus younger brother Sam on bass) formed the band in 2012 with drummer Kyle Hauck, who was swapped out for Daniel Wagner in 2013. Early in 2014, they recorded a live EP -- aptly titled Greta Van Fleet: Live in Detroit -- and their original track "Standing On" appeared in a Detroit ad for the Chevy Equinox. Soon, the group was signed to Lava Records by Jason Flom and the label pushed "Highway Tune" in early 2017, landing it on the Showtime series Shameless and using it as the anchor for the group's debut EP Black Smoke Rising. Later that November, the band released a double EP, From the Fires, which included one album consisting of four new tracks and another four-song set that reassembled their Black Smoke Rising EP. In the U.S., From the Fires topped Billboard's Hard Rock Albums chart and rocketed Greta Van Fleet to global success, charting throughout Europe and reaching number four in New Zealand. Endorsements from classic rock icons soon followed, with fellow Michigander Bob Seger pegging them to open a show and Robert Plant going on record to say that "they are Led Zeppelin I." In July 2018, Greta Van Fleet issued "When the Curtain Falls," the first single from their debut full-length, Anthem of the Peaceful Army, which arrived in October. The album was met with some notoriously scathing reviews, many critics pulling no punches in tearing apart the group's Zeppelin-informed throwback sound and image. Nonetheless, it was a hit with fans and sold well, peaking at number three on the Billboard 200 and topping the rock albums chart. At the 61st annual Grammys, the band were nominated for Best New Artist as well as Best Rock Performance for "Highway Tune." Though they didn't win in those categories, From the Fires took home the Grammy for Best Rock Album. Greta Van Fleet contributed the Anthem of the Peaceful Army outtake "Always There" to the 2019 film A Million Little Pieces, and in 2020 they issued the singles "My Way, Soon" and "Age of Machine" ahead of the April 2021 arrival of their sophomore studio LP The Battle at Garden's Gate. Produced by Greg Kurstin, the album again found the group building up their classic rock influences with songs that touched upon themes of war and religion. It debuted at number seven on the Billboard 200 and topped both the Top Hard Rock Albums and Top Rock Albums. In March 2023, on the heels of their Dreams in Gold tour, they band released "Meeting the Master" as the first single off their third album, Starcatcher. Recorded in Nashville with Dave Cobb, one of the biggest producers in country music, Starcatcher stripped away some of the shinier aspects of The Battle at Garden's Gate as they opted to mostly record live in the studio. The LP debuted at number eight on the U.S. Billboard 200 and earned a nomination for Best Rock Album at the 66th Grammy Awards.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo


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