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The Jim Jones Revue
Burning Your House Down Julian Marszalek , September 10th, 2010 08:41

It's more than a little sad to consider that there's a whole generation out there that's been hoodwinked into thinking that the piss-weak, sexless skiffle-ska of The Libertines in some way constituted rock & roll. Somewhere in the last decade, the idea that the back-story of a band should supersede the music took hold to the extent that many of the acts regularly touted as the 'Next Big Thing' were little more than a bunch of Top Man shopping chancers, with a slim grip of diminished chords and their own meagre abilities.

At times like these, it's good to go back to the source and draw deeply from the spring that ushered in the first era of the Devil's own music. The Jim Jones Revue know this only too well, and right now they're most exciting rock & roll band to be setting the valves on their amps to super-toasty whilst detonating dance floors in a manner that's been in all too short supply for some time.

The idea of a gang of 40-somethings fucking shit up with a sound indebted to Little Richard, Bunker Hill and The MC5 may seem laughable to some, but The Jim Jones Revue pack some serious pedigree. As a devotee of The Stooges, Jones led Thee Hypnotics at the point when baggy became the cultural default setting, before going on to form the Stax imbued skronk of Black Moses while guitarist Rupert Orton – brother of Beth – headed up Punk Rock Blues Records and the Not The Same Old Blues club nights. Moreover, having witnessed the likes of The Birthday Party, The Cramps and The Gun Club in full flight during their prime – events that had a profound effect on anyone lucky to have witnessed them – The Jim Jones Revue have set themselves a high standard and one that they reach with an almost indecent ease.

Or so it seems. In truth, The Jim Jones Revue have honed their blistering and hollering dynamic by the old fashioned method of developing their craft on the live circuit, and it's a tactic that's resulted in explosively breathless gigs and feverish word of mouth; a 20-minute set from an under-rehearsed buzz-band high on their own bullshit this ain't. And while all this results in a near orgasmic night out, the problem remains of how to capture this red raw energy for posterity.

As displayed by their first two releases, The Jim Jones Revue and the singles collection, Here To Save Your Soul, the answer was to create a mix so violent that The Stooges' Raw Power sounded like Vivaldi's Four Seasons. An interesting concept but such was the rudeness of the mix that the sonic limitations soon became apparent over a certain volume.

Enter Jim Sclavunos, the man-mountain powering Grinderman's beats and whose own impressive pedigree (Sonic Youth, The Cramps, Teenage Jesus & The Jerks among many others) has ensured that The Jim Jones Revue's choice of producer has been an astute one. As displayed by the compressed teasing of 'Dishonest John', Scalvunos has harnessed the power of the band's live performance without sacrificing any of the fidelity. The result is a gloriously molten blast of primordial rock & roll that burns with all the intensity of a magnesium strip in just over 33 heart-palpitating minutes. This is music that not only understands the undiluted sexual desires at the heart of 'Good Golly Miss Molly' or the deviancy that fuels 'Long Tall Sally' but also makes you want to fuck like a rutting dog upon hearing it.

Ultimately, by going back to the original blueprint and the sheer, unadulterated abandon of those original pioneers whose groundbreaking work has somehow got lost in the mists of time, The Jim Jones Revue are offering a whole world of new possibilities and goals to reach. Or, as the great man himself once said, "A wop bop a loo bop, a wop bam boo!"

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