25 May 2022

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Bad Jones - EP Review: You Are All Animals

12 May 2020 // A review by Carl Hayman

During these uncertain and unique times, all the self-isolation days at home trawling old music videos and posting my favourite album every day on Facebook has had me reminiscing about better times when rock was still king, and people who played live instruments were admired.

By better times, I mean the days when we all used to be allowed out, get dieseled up on JD’s and coke, and watch an epic live band rip life a new one, so Bad Jones brand new EP You Are All Animals was the antidote I’ve been looking for.

My little pro-tip for today, when you listen to a rock album for the first time, crank it!!!!!

Glass Eye starts off with a Nirvana-esque guitar lick that reminds me a lot of Aneurysm, but then when those vocals dump, I hear Brandon Boyd from Incubus mixed with Daryl Palumbo from Glassjaw all over it.

This track is killer. It’s got so much grit under it all – the guitar is so riffy, I would liken it to Chris Shiflett from Foo Fighters on the Wasting Light album, and the bass & drums sync effortlessly. It's EXACTLY what the doctor ordered.

Faceless is a little more harmonic and probably what I’d describe as the ‘radio friendly’ track off the EP, but I hate using that description these days as it seems everything on radio is 90% computer, and 10% music. The singer Sam Manning shows off his vocal range in this song, the main feature of the song, with some cool little mixing tricks placing the guitar parts across the different speakers giving it a wicked live effect.

Probably something you won’t get from my review, and it’s not something I ever talk about, but at this point, I want to make special mention of the awesome artwork they’ve got as the cover for the EP. I don’t know who put it together, but damn, that’s cool son.

Track number 3 Martyrs has heaps of work from drummer Matt Sleeth on the toms underneath, heaps of screaming over the top, and then harmonious vocals over the top of the chorus, leading into a half time, a break down, and into a new chorus that triggers a hit of dopamine initiating air guitar, desk drums, and head banging all simultaneously. 

Soul, No Body and the self-titled track Bad Jones are both super grungy, but the grunge that’s worth listening to, not the grunge that was written in the last 3rd of the bottle of whiskey. Bad Jones has elements of what reminds me of P.O.D’s latest work, but that’s mainly in the vocal arena, the music underneath it is really well structured, drum fills that breaks that give the song the space that it needs to really give it an edge. So many bands get this wrong, there is a gap so they fill it with a bit of guitar or a drum fill, Bad Jones have done the opposite and used the breaks to give the songs even more impact, and they’ve done it superbly.

Lastly, kudos to Dave Rhodes once again on his mix. Over the past 12 months I’ve come to a realisation that not many engineers in this country have the ability to deliver a rock record like he does. If you consider yourself a muso, listen to some rock songs, zone in on the drums & bass, and you’ll hear exactly what I’m talking about. Bad Jones have got this TIGHT, and Dave has delivered it smelling of roses.

That’s a solid 5 from me gents. It’s seldom I get to review an EP this damn cool.

Rating: ( 5 / 5 )

About Bad Jones

Bad Jones is an alternative rock band from Auckland. Showcasing abrasive, irregular guitar riffs melded with memorable vocal hooks all in a straightforward rock and roll package.

Bad Jones was initially formed in 2011 but broke up soon after, only to be revived in 2016 with new members and the foundations of what would later become the bands live set and debut releases, 2019 single Soul No Body and the upcoming debut EP You Are All Animals, due for release 16th May 2020.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Bad Jones


You Are All Animals
Year: 2020
Type: EP

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