I love it when I get self-released material thatâ€™s good. It makes my day. I got into this â€œbusinessâ€ to help unknowns get known, and to support the little guys who donâ€™t have the backing of major-label ad budgets. The debut EP from jacksonknife is solid indiepop/Americana, without a single skippable tune.
â€œCovered Earsâ€ emphasizes Jeremy Kirkland’s nasal whine, with a sound somewhere between that dude from Blind Melon and Bob Dylan. No, that doesnâ€™t sound beautiful. But it works with the strings in the background and the bandâ€™s hangdog sound. What makes this tune so interesting is the bouncy walk of the percussion in the background, which keeps the song moving right along. â€œThe Morningâ€ is more about the music, but itâ€™s got the same kind of bounce. The production work by Kyle Johnson (Modest Mouse, The Hives) is evident hereâ€”the material is crisp and hyped, but the songwriting skill is not lost under the luster. As I said twice already, this is a bouncy EP: Light, sweet, and generally happy-sounding. A strong debut.