Tuesday, 4 June 2013

PJP Band - ...And So It Goes

Album review by jay@thesoundofconfusion.co.uk

And so it starts... with a spat out tirade of a poem with the vitriol of Saul Williams, the disquiet of Nick Cave and the everyman of Joe Strummer. '...And So It Goes' begins with '...And So It Went', this brief passion play starts with the hum of an amp being switched on, and ends with the clatter of drumsticks, and the PJP Band then fire at us with second track 'Disciplines'. With a rawness of early Manics and a a touch of the unhinged of The Eighties Matchbox B-line Disaster, the track lurches like a magnificent Karloff movie beast, but 'Disciplines' never looses sight of its form and is a triumph of a song. Its end-point, a preacher ream of purges, adds an almost apocalyptic feel. 'Might Or Moses' rails back the brimstone with an almost conventionally pretty song. It has a wistful sweetness that is complimented by pictures of swaying hips and flicks of hair. A quite wonderful song, it deconstructs itself and builds into a into a sky-high, organ-rich ending. 'Ole! We Ain't Prey' is a more fervent trip. Touches of loose psychedelia keys slot into a rush of a song, it rides along on waves of chants and propelling drums. 'Ole!...' then devolves into a twisted march, regimented with lyrics of "blood split in your coliseum", and another fine song spins out on a collision of acid-fried glory.

Armed with a flick-knife hook-line, "it makes no difference" is slashed into 'Vicious Luck' which is a violent success of a song. Bleeding over itself, it pummels along and fights you into happy submission. An irresistible song, that leaves you smiling and bruised at its end. At every turn so far '... And So It Goes' keeps getting better and better. Then hits 'I Am A Racer', which may be the album's best song so far. It looms into view with a massive bass, and the PJP band give you a welcome lightness, with a melodic rush that sweeps you up. A truly huge song that worms into you and doesn't let go. In album full of wondrous surprises, the Joe Cocker 'Little Help From My Friends' feel of 'Sweet Tokyo' is perhaps the best surprise so far. A song for you to sit down, have a breath, a drink, a smoke. 'Sweet Tokyo' then lifts up to a gospel hued epic mid-point, the sweet twist is never far and the speaking in tongues passage redresses the freak balance, then 'Sweet Tokyo' picks you up and takes you out in a shimmering peak. 'Karm And Condition' comes on all Jon Spencer drinking with the Jim Jones Revue. A stomping, testifying song to love and friendship. It has an orgiastic indulgence of guitars,organs and horns. It's a track that Strummer in his prime would of been proud out. A highlight in an album full of them. Thankfully after the glory of 'Karma & Condition', the next song, has Lennon-esque touches, but this isn't some retro backwards step, 'The Chalk Divide' is a bluesy, 'Instant Karma', trip of a song. Its stately feel welcome after 'Sweet Tokyo's pounding. 'The Chalk Song' also has a protest vibe to it where "we don't owe you anything" sings out.

By now you are waiting for '...And So It Goes' to show you its weak points. 'Stone Cold Cinema' fails to do this. It is a stripped-back song; voice and organ telling a tale of passion, lust and "washing myself of you". Here singer Patrick James Pearson stands with Frank Turner in the rare clutch of modern artists who are able to use lyrics to paint an eloquent picture, but never to the point of self-indulgence. 'Stone Cold Cinema' challenges you to listen, in the best way. Instead of head-snapping you back with some aural assault the PJP Band slowly bring you back up for air and light with 'Long Time Runner'. Again it delivers, although perhaps the most traditional on here, it delights with a mariachi horn before bringing back the full fire and glory as you are told that "you were a long time coming". It climaxes you and the song with a piano-led fury of a conclusion. Penultimate song 'So It Goes' nearly fails to meet the sky-scraping standard set out here, but it keeps its vibrant head above water as the PJP band deliver concisely. It has the pop nuance of early Supergrass and a suitable playfulness to it mixed with the bleeding raw edge.

 '...And so it goes' comes to an end with 'EMBRACEHER'. This song concludes a simple, stunning album full of earthy delights, passion-led fire and fury which never looses its way and is in awe of the song's ability to move you. 'EMBRACEHER' is a call to arms, a vast swathe of a song. It brings out all of the PJP Band's impressive strengths and it takes you on a trip that will end many a magical night yet to come.Then someone can be heard on the outro saying song is "a bit special". Yes it is. As the album finishes, you catch your breath and jump in again...

PJP Band's website

Buy the album

Catch them live:

9th - Charles Causely Fest LAUNCESTON
29th June - EDEN SESSIONS, Eden Project, Cornwall
13th - Castle Rock LAUNCESTON
10th - Boardmasters NEWQUAY

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