Sunday, 11 March 2012

Review: Jack Jeffery

Jack Jeffery - The Constant That Remains (Independent)
Right then, an album of one-man-band-prog. A description that may not be completely accurate, but with song titles like "The Sirius Wall', "Valencian Cosmos" and "Ascendancy", pre-listening, it’s a fair conclusion to come to. Once played, it’s a hushed, intimate recording, an album to listen to in the late evening quietude, without anything to distract from it. Once you start you’ll find that the closeness is increased by the pastoral pace of the songs, the gentle voice, and lyrics like 'Memories like embers... Smolder in the haze... But your image pierces through... And I'm all rearranged...'. The wonder is that it doesn’t really remind me of anyone else despite a small, nagging feeling that we’ve been this way before. Ah well...

These songs are nicely peppered with six instrumentals, helping to break up the singular approach to the music, as they add pace, and surges of sound (not loud, but still surges). Four of the six follow each other as Jack, bit by bit, finds his way through them, playing and programming everything; this goes for the vocal tracks too. He is, by definition, a genuine one-man band.

The finale (because that’s what it is, and not just a final track), "Carry On", is a beautiful conclusion to the music, although the song is about protest, and not changing, but despite the pressures to do just that: 'One constant that remains... We can change ourselves... But we will never change...' This isn’t going to set the world alight, or change it in any way, and I doubt that it was his intention. He dedicates the record to John Lennon, and all who are devoted to peace His proclamation needs nothing added, as it says everything.
Kev A.

Jack Jeffery: The Constant That Remains

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