Reviewing Into The Sun, the single from New Jersey indie rock band The Static Jacks which came out a few months back, we commented that “the single is a joyous duo of rich and exciting sounds and though the songs may not have your jaw dropping in awe at something brand new but they certainly will excite ears and enthuse hearts”. Well with those words also apply to the new album from the band with an amendment. If You’re Young does stop one in their tracks with the awe not so apparent in the single, sweeping one up in songs and sounds which stroll along their own unique and adventurous path. Good though the single was it gave no real indication as to how impressive this album was going to be. If You’re Young is immense, a master class in creative songwriting, melodic manipulation, and the breeding place for an infection as potent as any virus.
From New Jersey and formed in 2009, the quartet of vocalist Ian Devaney, guitarists Henry Kaye and Michael Sue-Poi, and drummer Nick Brennan have already made a distinct mark with debut EP Laces in 2009 and numerous shows and tours with the likes of Futureheads, Biffy Clyro, Young the Giant, and We Were Promised Jetpacks. Their sound is single minded and full of determination to do things their way which results in a confidence and surety which oozes out of every note, chord and song. The band sit somewhere between pop punk and an alternative indie sound, bringing the best and uniqueness of both into their own majestic creations.
The album erupts into an instant tremendous pleasing of the senses from the very start with Defend Rosie meeting the ear with firm beats, enthused hand claps and a persistent riff that smacks of mischief. Enthusiastic and urgent, the punk toned song sets their stall out from the off, exciting with feisty rhythms, guitars and basslines which carry as much defiant attitude as Devaney and his lyrics, and big hearted melodies as sassy as the girl of your dreams. From a tremendous start the band simply accelerate things with the wicked sweet tease that is Girl Parts. With an excellent additional female vocal to the inspired and emotive tones off Devaney the song is gorgeous, and confirmation of the fact The Static Jacks have an expertise at writing pop songs that few rival.
The level across the album never wavers with Into The Sun with its Pete Shelley like melodic hook and the likes of the anthemic Blood Pressure, a song which rounds up the senses into a triumphant ball of emotional rebellion, and the soaring melodic grace of Relief, all lifting up the heart and soul with sounds that warm and energise the day. The third of these songs ripples with light sparkling melodies, glittering guitars, and a passion which fills every pore from every line and reflection.
As good as any album is there are always moments that strike the most effectively and alongside the opening duo of songs it is within the mighty outbursts of My Parents Lied and Walls (We Can’t Work It Out) that The Static Jacks show they are creating music that will take them to heady heights. The first begins with a subdued voice and guitar welcome before giant beats join the fray, yet still the song holds back evolving into a canter at most whilst its crystalline melodies radiate. Subtly the intensity increases to match the angst in the vocals of Devaney. Slowly it expands into waves of crashing guitars coaxed by incisive yet reserved melodies, all blending into a fine and inspired union.
Walls (We Can’t Work It Out) is the best song on the album, dare one say the perfect song. It has everything from stunning harmonious vocals, melodies which push away any dark and rhythms that are born of primal instinct, evolution, and an insistence that cannot be denied. It is tumultuous with riffs which muscle their way into the ear alongside the consuming drums, a bass which has more belligerence than a teen asked to clean their room, and energy as potent as nature herself. The only complaint is that it is so damn short.
The album ends on Drano-Ears, where the band takes a dip into the eighties. With a soulful sound and heartfelt emotive feel which reminds of the likes of The Bluebells and House of Love, the song is a galloping flow of soft and caressing melodies and stately elegance. It completes what is a delicious collection of well crafted and completely enjoyable excitable music. The Static Jacks are coming for your heart, are you ready?