I find more often than not that the lead in descriptions that come with the music I am sent doesn’t really mean a lot, especially once I have given the material a couple of listens. In this case, I was actually drawn in and got really excited to give The J Spot a listen. Unfortunately, 8 times out of 10 excitement turns into let down.
The thing is, I love The Bronx, and vastly enjoy The Cancer Bats (haven’t listened to Every Time I Die much but I don’t dislike them at all), and the description of “hooky grooves and energetic, powerful riffs” along with the hardcore and punk tag lines, I thought this would be an absolute winner. The artwork is kick as too. Buuuuuut I wouldn’t exactly say it hits that many spots for me.
Strictly sticking to the sound, the Blues sound that weaves its way through the guitars makes the insane full on metal style riffs fresher to listen to. And believe me, Jackie D are a riff-fest. I definitely pick out more metal than punk or hardcore influences here from the writing of the guitars. The way they build up tend to be alternating layers of the same riff panned out, which adds to a deeper listening experience, and definitely allow the bass lines to breathe on through. The drums provide a solid backing and the vocals add a rougher charm to the overall style. Ultimately, the sound is an interesting combination and holds up very well on its own.
Where the downfall is, at least for me, is a pure lack of variety. I found the songs droned in and out of one another with no real defining hooks. Sure, they are filled with good writing, with those hooks and enjoyable rhythms, but there is nothing that standout, and by the time you reach the end of The J Spot, no song at any point stands out as being particularly good. In fact, this reaches the extent of the first couple of songs being more memorable, purely because interest becomes lost past this point when nothing new crops up in the approach.
It may just be that the particular style of music that is played isn’t to my taste, but I have a feeling the hype of riff hooks and punk/hardcore music proved a let down. However, if you are a major riff junkie and like music to be heavily guitar driven more than anything else, then do give The J Spot a listen, you shouldn’t be disappointed.
Jake Hancke – 25/03/2017
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