The Wailing Jacks

The Wailing Jacks

Formed at the end of 2003 in Brighton and already catching the ear of Radio 2’s Mark Lamar and Mark Radcliffe, The Wailing Jacks release their first 4 track demo onto the world, and not a bad effort it is too.

‘Locked in Chains’ starts proceedings in riotous fashion falling somewhere near the simplicity of the Stones and the Black Crows in terms of the dirty blues on offer. However, being topped off with a serious vocal sneer along the lines of Gallagher junior, it all adds up to a full flavoured pint of lad rock that, at just over two and a half minutes, is about right to get the evening started.

Dropping the tempo down a notch, ‘Cigarettes and Perfume’ is a much quieter affair which sees the appearance of a Hammond organ marking the start of this Oasis-esque plodder. Ben Welshy Williams’ vocals come through a lot clearer in this track giving up their Tim Burgess influence and the whole thing is subtly and cleverly pulled off using the melodic twin guitars to good effect.

However, as the name suggests, ‘Dirty Suzie’ sees the Jacks’ get back qualities shown in the first track being just a good ole rock ‘n’ roll tune with predictable, yet fun lyrics – beauty queen gone bad, daddy’s little princes shagging anything that moves, you know the score. It’s twelve bar blues updated for the noughties with some great backing vocals helping the tried and tested formula trundle along quite happily.

The last and the only live track, ‘Stagger On’, arrives with some solid drumming introducing a flurry of great guitar work being the hallmark of this tune – a simple riffing guitar complemented beautifully with Tom Morello (RATM) style use of the pickup switch creates some interesting musical layers. The vocals also get a good outing as they’re upped a notch in terms of both delivery and content with ‘lazing on a sofa in the afternoon’ being a nice twist on that familiar Kinks lyric, to name but a few on offer.

All together these four tracks paint a pretty good picture of a young band with future potential – potential that might be realised quicker then they expect if they can just manage to catch that retro train before it leaves the station.

Written by Habert on

Pete Habert was sub-editor for The Mag and co-ordinated submissions from the swarm of writers that contributed articles from their local music scenes.

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