Jr. Joy – The Gorge
It’s interesting to hear a newish band describe their music as “excellent” as is the case with the band that we are reviewing right here. This sort of confidence can go one of two ways. If your songs really are good, like Noel Gallagher’s for example, and people will tend to smirk and go along with it. Or, if you’re songs are as good as Lou Reed’s and you know it, people might start calling you a genius.
If your songs are rubbish, then people won’t really let you forget it, and you may very well get reduced to a pile of oddities that includes Jedward and Johnny Borrell’s solo material. Confidence in music, as in sports, is good, but it can’t beat training.
Jr. Joy’s The Gorge doesn’t exactly strike you as a moment of pure inspiration, brought on blissfully by intense rehearsals. It’s a mood piece, an indie prog-rock that sounds cooked up right after math class. It is convincingly played, though and even contains a faux-rap part before the guitar pedals get a work out too. An enjoyable track, professional-sounding piece of indie-prog.
Rubi Ate the Fig – Tremor
Somewhere around the 1970s, just as rock n’ roll was nearing the completion of its teenage years, groups of musicians got the idea that popular music could be more. Bands and artists appeared that seemed to explore the sonic territory, usually in front of an audience, arriving in strange, foreign places.
This sort of belief in the rock song as a form of spiritual exploration found adherents in audience members. From the Deadheads to Tim Buckley, or even Jimmy Page abusing his guitar using a cello bow, rules about the format of rock were chucked out the window.
There was a downside, of course, as was swiftly exemplified by the appearance and annoying endurance of jam rock. Rubi Ate the Fig’s Tremor, however, shares little with these sorts of over-indulgent works. The tune finds the singer methodically exploring the space given to her by the flavorful jazz-rock instrumental. It’s an adventurous approach that leads to unexpected results.