Posted by: Jamie | November 22, 2013

Music Review: Jubalson – “Don’t Remember Me”

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Louisville singer-songwriter Brian Ott has been through his share of strife over the last few years since the last release of his musical vehicle Jubalson. Suffering from sickness that should be foreign to a man of his young age, the old cliché is true in that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Jubalson’s new full-length album “Don’t Remember Me” is a weathered work of sincere perspective and delivered ease that personal trial bestow an artist. Don’t misunderstand, the collected songs aren’t an audio belly aching session, but rather a confessional journey that is just as rewarding and cathartic for the listener as it probably is for the storyteller.

“Parasitic Drink” sets the mood, boasting tight male/female harmonies (shared with singer-pianist Allie Moisan) reminiscent of slowcore alums Low or Mojave 3 and pours you a glass of empathy that is meant to be nursed over the course of the next nine tracks.

“I think that I could hold on longer….”

A dark but gentle atmosphere is established throughout the record and hovers over each sonic offering, but without becoming stale or tiresome. This singular thread is carried and woven throughout the album’s entirety by slightly overdriven guitars, moody piano and gorgeous harmonies all draped in sparkling reverb. Here and there are tinier musical moments reprising melodies that reiterate the fact that each song is a part of a bigger narrative.

“Moon” shows Ott’s apt ability for melody with its arpeggiated acoustic guitar and ramshackle percussion. “The Lonely Group” feels like a lost page from the Graham Parson playbook without feeling too ripped off. “Suffocated” burns slow then emotionally exhausts itself through Phil Turner’s driven drum groove and soaring guitar solos – something that is often excluded from modern day folk rock for one reason or another.

The bottom line is Jubalson is quickly establishing itself as a part of long legacy of Louisville bands that demand ears and respect. The reviewer certainly wishes Ott improved health and for burdens to be lifted, but we are richer for him sharing his woes. “Don’t Remember Me” is a good enough record that, that despite it’s titular verbal request, listeners won’t soon forget.

Jubalson plays a CD release show tonight (Friday, November 22nd) at The New Vintage in Louisville at 8pm. Bombino is the headliner. Tickets at the door are $15. Check out more Jubalson news at www.jubalson.com and on their facebook page.

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