“The Great Affairs certainly have sounds they know work well for them and naturally revisit them often – very much case in point for the twangy stomper ‘California’ with its rousing country rock edge – but just in case you feel ‘Dream In Stereo’ is overly familiar at times, –‘Miss America’ is set to blow you away. Cut from similar rootsy sounds as the best GA tunes, this number remodels them into a slow-burning ballad that’s worthy of standing alongside The Black Crowes ‘She Talks To Angels’ and even the Faces ‘Glad and Sorry’. A slow groove paves the way for a wall of gently stroked organ sounds recalling the late Ian McLagan, the soaring lead guitars are impeccably played and the sense of hurt within Smith’s delivery just sets everything off beautifully. Across the better part of six minutes, the band are on fire.”
“After teasing us with 2013’s 7-track EP, Nashville’s The Great Affairs finally return with their latest full-length set, Dream in Stereo. Denny Smith and company deliver yet another top-shelf collection of kick-ass material which begs to be featured within any play list that includes Kings of Leon, Counting Crows, Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, and their ilk. Thought provoking lyrics coupled with Smith’s raspy voice invite you inside the album as it often harkens back to the kind of grit and raw emotion of Rod Stewart’s Every Picture Tells a Story. Manning the board alongside Grammy-nominated engineer Michael Saint-Leon seems to have been the right decision as TGA sound more confident and proficient than ever on each of the record’s dazzling 13 tracks. Dream in Stereo must not be overlooked by fans of no frills, balls out rock ‘n’ roll, especially since it’s getting harder and harder to find in these seemingly endless days of over produced, soulless, drivel.”
“‘Left Of Me’ sees drummer Kenny Wright take the lead vocals in a low, down and dirty rock and roll track that isn’t too far away from a Cinderella kind of vibe. Denny then takes over with more of a Rick Springfield type of sound in the excellent ‘The Next Three Minutes’ which is as good a slice of power pop as Fountain Of Wayne’s ‘Stacy's Mom’ or ‘1985’ by Bowling For Soup. It’s a top, top tune and as good as they get plus, if you’re someone that simply doesn’t get The Rolling Stones, that’s an extra reason for you to sing along. Loudly and hoarsely. ‘California’ and ‘She Likes’ reinstates more of a party atmosphere as the band rock back out with much swagger culminating in the Foreigner-esque ‘Secret’s A Secret’. ‘Elise’, ‘I Can’t Sleep Alone’ and ‘Stay All Night’ all share the lush, dreamy melodic pop overtones that equal just about anything that the Gigolo Aunts have recorded.”
“Imagine if you will the instant hooks and melodies of Cheap Trick with the Americana of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers complete with a hint of countrified spirit and the melodic edge of Aerosmith...'Dream in Stereo' .. to be heard loud while in the car driving on an endless dusty highway.”
"Dream In Stereo" continues to showcase Denny Smith as one of the top independent singer/songwriters.
“Denny Smith and his band The Great Affairs return in 2013 with a seven-song EP entitled “4.” After taking most of last year off, the band comes back with one of their strongest efforts to date. The band sounds tight. Denny’s songwriting should be compared to some of the great classic rockers like Tom Petty and Neil Young.”
“‘Fists & Guitars’, as its title suggests, is a full-on rock ‘n’ roll thrasher – and it’s on this Kenny Wright penned number that the promise of the revitalized Great Affairs being a kick-ass band really delivers. With a ragged style and a no-holds-barred rock ‘n’ roll aesthetic, The Great Affairs crank out sweaty riffs akin to early AC/DC meeting with the Led Zeppelin 1971 classic ‘Rock And Roll’. While each of these songs offers something of listening interest, this is the pick of the crop.”
“ The first “great” new release of 2013 has arrived by Nashville indie rock band The Great Affairs. Front man Denny Smith and company kick off the new year right with this infectious, 7-track EP, that’s guaranteed to filch your soul and rankle inside your mind until it drives you bat shit crazy. Key tracks include the Tom Petty-esque “Sherrybaby,” the scorching “Fists & Guitars,” and “Gone,” which recalls 1970s era Rod Stewart. The Great Affairs’ 4 is a surefire cure for the winter blues and your ailing rock n’ roll heart. ”
"While virtually every track is a fun and engaging listen, one of my favorites is the built-for-radio mid-tempo rocker “How Does It Feel” – kind of a Cheap Trick – Tom Petty fusion. With its luscious harmonies, “Lie To Me” comes across just as strong – in a different decade, this could have easily been a top 10 hit."
"Vocalist/guitarist Denny Smith delivers 10 songs, each one dripping with raspy vocals and tight power-pop arrangements. The Cheap Trick influence is audible on "Born A Ghost", while "Drown" has a Talking Heads vibe, but the songs don't come any stronger or punchier than opener "Head Light"....hooks aplenty."
"Since the release of 2008's And Nothing But the Truth, Former's Denny Smith has been busy with The Great Affairs, releasing 2 full-lengths and an EP. But here Smith puts his alter ego aside for another turn of hard power pop that has more in common with Butch Walker and Cheap Trick than the mellow roots pop of his other band. The frenetic "Head Light" lets you know where you stand right off the bat with a driving hard pop beat that recalls the Foo Fighters. "How Does it Feel?" steps off the accelerator a bit but still rocks out in a Steve Bertrand/Rob Bonfiglio fashion, while "Sister" has that Walker's kind of swagger. And "Lie to Me" is a flat-out classic (see video below). For those who want to emphasize the "power" in "power pop", this is your disc."
"If ever there was a case study on how to produce perfect power pop that combines fantastic rhythms, intelligent lyrics and finely crafted songs, with superb production values, that will endure for many years - this is it. I think this album will be looked upon as a classic years from now."
"Drawing musical sustenance and inspiration from the likes of Elvis Costello, The Cars, and Cheap Trick, The Great Affairs plough an unashamedly retro feel. The 80s will seep from your speakers within seconds of opening gambit "Head Light" bouncing in on its simple garage band-style riffage. "Fix You" and "Lie To Me" display a certain harmonic knack as ooh-ahh backing vocals add a certain sweetness to offset a surprising but decidedly melancholy undercurrent. The melodies and harmonies are where it's at for these guys, with basic basic guitar lines offering the bare minimum of riffola. Still, it didn't do The fecking Beatles any harm..."
“Nashville based pop/rock band The Great Affairs’ latest album, Ricky took the wheels.., is a great affair indeed. This newly released collection of well-crafted songs picks up where their 2009 eponymous debut left off, yet raises the musical bar significantly. Lead vocalist Denny Smith penned all 12 tracks contained in this instantly likeable and highly memorable piece of musical ear candy. Ultimately, it’s the sum of all the parts that make this highly enjoyable album a success. From the inspired lyrics to the excellent guitar work, Ricky took the wheels.. is guaranteed to leave listeners satisfied and anticipating what’s to come from this highly promising band. This praiseworthy recording sounds like a major label deal should be waiting just around the corner. If this album isn’t perfect, then it’s damn close.”
““Ricky Took The Wheels” picks up where the last record left off, with the Nashville band serving up more pop Americana. “Feels Like Home” is a terrific way to start things off…an upbeat number straight out of the Tom Petty songbook. Hearing The Great Affairs play this one feels like home, indeed, and this one is my favorite off the new album. “Inside Your Head” also has its charms, with a bit of Black Crowes injected into the punchy riffs. The verses shake you a bit, but it is the wonderful pre-chorus that gets you moving. “My Apologies” is a sparse and lovely fingerpicked tune, but then “You’re Not Funny” arrives - a bluesy road house track that gets your blood pumping once again. Similarly, “Bastard Son” is a driving pop rocker that proves these guys can be more accessible if they want to be. Finally, the record ends on a high note with the crazy good rocker called “Last Good Memory”. Recommended if you like The Jayhawks, Grant Lee Phillips, or Wilco”
“The Great Affairs are back with their brand of good old-fashion Rock & Roll. This band does not need any gimmicks or to follow any styles to get noticed, their music says it all. The new album entitled "Ricky Took The Wheels" is available now on Faragon Records. The band comes right out of the gate with their straight-forward rock on "Feels Like Home" and "Inside Your Head." The ballads "My Apologies" and "You'll Never Know" carry an acoustic Wilco-type sound with some great lyrics that touch the heart. The band returns to their roots with the southern rocker "So Damn High" and "You're Not Funny." The Great Affairs have so many great songs on their new release that a major label needs to stand-up and take notice of this latest band to come from Nashville.”
“The Great Affairs-Ricky Took the Wheels. The Great Affairs are led by Denny Smith, formerly of fORMER, whose "loud" power pop we reviewed here last year. Unlike fORMER, though, The Great Affairs have a more laid-back "Popicana" sound not unlike The Meadows, or the poppier side of Paul Westerberg. Ricky Took the Wheels is actually their second album, with their self-titled debut out late last year, and like the fine debut this has plenty to offer. "Feels Like Home" is as good as this style of pop gets, featuring jangly guitars and hooks and melodies galore, while "So Damn High" and "You're Not Funny" rock in the Tom Petty vein. Smith and crew know their way around a ballad, too, as "My Apologies" and "A Hundred Other Things" demonstrate clearly. And "Last Good Memory" closes the disc as it began, with an excellent roots rocker.”
"Smith is a soulful, rustic rock `n' roller who's has turned out a consistent string of fine records over the past couple of years. The Great Affairs' music takes in the rootsy guitar rock, the strained angst, the wavery worry of the Honeydogs, the throbbing blood-vessel edginess of Paul Westerberg, and the soulfulness of Paul Carrack-era Squeeze. All delivered with a passion and desperation that demand attention. In the end, it's just straight ahead rock and roll. No frills. Not sappy, not loud...just oozing with great energy, good songwriting and a powerful voice."
“The Great Affairs hail from Nashville, TN and prove why Nashville is one of the hotbeds of the nation for new talent. Their sound is simple, but effective and draws you into what they’re saying. Pop, Folk, Rock, Americana; The Great Affairs cover them all. Right from the album’s lead-off song “Dodge,” The Great Affairs draw strong references to the band Wilco. Denny Smith’s straining vocals play perfectly to the band’s Americana Pop sound. The music of “Dear John” and “Undertow” sound like Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers outtakes. The acoustics of “Break Me Down” and “Isn’t She Gold” helps you concentrate on the song’s strong lyrics. The music of the album flows so smoothly that you keep wanting more and more as each song is as well-written as the one before.”
“.."an aural barrage of Americana pop, country rock and honky-stomps. Think dusty boots and a crisp-collared button down...country-fried with nuanced pop undertones...straddling alt-country and radio-ready rawk. One part Whiskeytown, throwback Soul Asylum and the Jayhawks with a bit of Wilco thrown in for good measure, The Great Affairs have rendered a respectable outing; truly something for just about everyone." ”
"...playing loose and having a good, solid time making music from the gut and letting the sparks fly. That it comes off sounding so effortless is testimony to the talents of the participants. Fans of The Jayhawks, The V-Roys and Limbeck should dive right in."
"In the neighborhood of Tom Petty, Wilco, and The Jayhawks. The sound is earnest and organic, pleasant and mellow.The lyrics remind me of the subtle genius of Paul Westerberg at times."
"We hear roots poppers like The Jayhawks, some Paul Westerberg solo/latter period Replacements throughout the record...a shimmering blend of country, folk, and bar band rock-leaning songs. Listening to these guys make music is a beautiful American experience."