We’re just under a month away from the release of JTB‘s Heavy Days, and after giving ourselves a good long time to soak in the album, we think we might be kind of ready to review it. The boys dropped us two copies before heading westward so we thought it only fitting to give two reviews: one from Forever Young and one from Deviants Die.
It’s poppy, it’s psychedelic, but most importantly, it’s heavy. There’s a reason that word appears so many times in the album, reminding everyone who’s stuck on the catchy melodies and flange-freakouts what this album is really about: rocking-the-fuck-out. It’s a bit of a departure from their last vinyl release, The Boys R Back In Town; you won’t find any thirteen-minute paeans to the act of ghost riding on this album; it’s too busy making you move to the distortion-drenched rhythms of singer Jake’s three-stringed guitar. Don’t get me wrong, there’s still enough studio trickery to make Michael Rother jealous, but it’s done to only flavor the album, not dominate it like their earlier releases.
Insomnia is not a fun problem to have, but I have figured out ways of putting my sleeplessness to better use. Twice now I have found myself watching the sunrise in the mean streets of Nashville playing Heavy Days at the highest possible volume. The first of which being a much more moving experience. Scooped in a car around 4 AM on a Friday morning, a friend and I drove around the streets of Nashville for no real reason, just cruising. And, after a while, we started to talk about how weird Nashville is. How weird it is that we have a to-scale replica of The Parthenon. The conversation led us there, to those giant steps around 5:30 in the morning. We continued then to play JEFF’s Heavy Days in it’s entirety while dancing in/around The Parthenon, praising the Greek Gods and Goddesses while the morning staffers and the sun started to show up [absolutely true story.] The epitome of Nashville was reached that morning, and every morning should only dream to be so lucky. It should be mandated that Heavy Days be played at The Parthenon at sunrise every morning. In all seriousness though, Heavy Days is JEFF’s magnum opus [so far] and it’s the kind of record that I’ll have to buy 4 or 5 copies of because I’ll overplay them again and again. And over the next while, you’ll read reviews of the album where people will compare JEFF to bands like Wavves, and they’ll say things like “The Brotherhood is the bridge between stoner and pop.” And they’ll try to peg it as a Be Your Own Pet off-shoot. But JEFF is not Wavves. And “stoner” and “pop” are the bridges from JEFF to every other band. And I don’t think anyone could’ve shot from Be Your Own Pet and landed where they have. I’ve watched the Brotherhood grow for a long time, and I’m just now realizing that I’ve been lucky enough to witness some really heavy shit. Thanks guys. That, and I played the record for my mom, who’s response was, “This sounds like real rock and roll.” She knows her shit, too. Trust.
There you go! Doesn’t the JTB font on the album remind you a lot of the Nevermind font? Whatever. The album comes out on October 13 on Infinity Cat. We’ve heard talk of a release show at Glenn Danzig’s House, and the Grooms myspace says something about a show in Nashy with JEFF on the 13th…. we’ll be sure to keep you posted. Until then, you can catch them at Little Hamilton with Chain & The Gang on Sept. 26.