Danko Jones says that GRETA VAN FLEET should embrace the LED ZEPPELIN influence in its music instead of denying that it has been hugely inspired by the iconic British rock band.
Despite the fact that GRETA VAN FLEET has managed to sell out shows all over the world, the four-piece has been criticized for channeling a sound uncannily similar to LED ZEPPELIN, with some music fans slamming singer Josh Kiszka for allegedly copy-and-pasting Robert Plant‘s vocal style.
During a recent interview with Australia’s Loud magazine, Jones was asked for his take on GRETA VAN FLEET‘s success.
“Well, listen, I don’t fault them,” the frontman and leader of his namesake band said. “They’re young guys. They’re a rock band and it’s great that a rock band is getting some sort of attention. Because God knows no one else is on that level. There’s VOLBEAT, but there’s a huge drop-off after VOLBEAT and GRETA VAN FLEET. But GRETA VAN FLEET has attracted a real divisive crowd; you either love ‘em or you hate ‘em.
“The only criticism I would level at them is the fact that they refuse to acknowledge the influence that ZEPPELIN has on their music,” he continued. “And I think that’s what is pissing a lot of people off. Just say you sound like ZEPPELIN, and all is cool.
“Another thing that bugs me about GRETA VAN FLEET, and it’s not about the band, it’s more to do with the fans and the music listeners in general. There was a band called KINGDOM COME from Germany, and they sounded exactly like LED ZEPPELIN. Exactly like them. They did the same thing, where they refused to acknowledge that ZEPPELIN was an influence, and they got roasted alive. And they ended up disbanding, [although] I think they’re back together in some form. But that’s what I mean. And I also feel that people should get into KINGDOM COME if they’re going to get into GRETA VAN FLEET. I mean, come on. So I created a hashtag, called #justiceforkingdomcome.
“That’s pretty much my take on the whole thing,” he added. “It’s like, hey, if you sound like ZEPPELIN and you guys can pull it off and you’ve got the chops, and you’re coming up with original, new songs, just say you listen… Say ZEPPELIN‘s a big influence. For us, I’ll say it, I’ll do it — AC/DC, THIN LIZZY, BLACK SABBATH, the MISFITS. These are all heavy influences on us. Right off the top, there. I did it, boom, done, let’s move on. See how easy it is? [Laughs]”
Last year, the members of GRETA VAN FLEET told FaceCulture in an interview that LED ZEPPELIN was not a major influence on the group despite close similarities between the two bands’ styles. Guitarist Jake Kiszka explained: “I think that we’ve become more conscious of it, because I don’t think before we ever really realized, in a lot of senses, the similarities or the commonalities that we share with that group.”
He added: “I think it’s one of the greatest compliments that could ever be given to a young band like ourselves. The’’re arguably one of the greatest rock bands of all time, so that is humbling and inspiring and honorable, in that sense… Even if it exactly wasn’t an overwhelming influence of ours, it still was influential and we can certainly see it. But overall, it doesn’t really affect the writing of our music.”
Jake told The Pulse Of Radio about GRETA VAN FLEET‘s main influences: “Blues is that glue that bonds us, you know. I’m a guitarist, so I have to have influences from people like Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Hendrix — he’s another good one — yeah, like, a lot of the British blues players and even the American blues players like Elmore James. And yeah, so, a lot of blues for me — well, for all of us.”
GRETA VAN FLEET‘s debut album, “Anthem Of The Peaceful Army”, landed at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 chart in July despite earning a lukewarm 53/100 score on review curation site Metacritic.
In December, GRETA VAN FLEET scored four Grammy Award nominations, one for each major rock category — “Best Rock Album”, “Best Rock Song”, “Best Rock Performance” — and a “Best New Artist” nod. They went on to win for “Best Rock Album” for their sophomore EP, “From The Fires”.
DANKO JONES‘s new album, “A Rock Supreme”, will be released on April 26 via M-Theory Audio (U.S.), Rise Above (U.K.), Indica (Canada, AU, NZ) and AFM (rest of the world).