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Artist of the Month
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September 2016
Them Jones
"A Mountain of Nonsense
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Philly rockers Them Jones craft far-out riffs and psych-drenched anthems, reviving and reinventing soundscapes reminiscent of the Age of Aquarius on their new LP A Mountain of Nonsense.

 

Beginning with the steady buzz of “Mended All Made Clean,” the five-piece's efforts make one take notice, as reverbed screams and gritty cymbals collide with satisfying repetition and impassioned diction. As if filling the narrative chasm between Mikal Cronin’s “Gone” and Ty Segall’s “Inside Your Heart,” Them Jones’ album opener sinks deep into the hearts of listeners without pretense or apology. “Hollow Man” captivates in a similar fashion by teaching its audience patience as atmospheric dissonance gives way to melodic guitar and harmonized vocals that paint a glaringly relatable portrait of a man with “wounds to mend.” A deliciously contemplative downer, the track is as haunting as its namesake suggests. Soon after its end, the infectious tempo and throbbing beat of “Outburst” fills the silence, switching the mood of the album from the musings of a contemplative loner to the pulsating heart of an unabashed romantic.

 

The bluesy growl of “One of These Days” casts a spell on its own terms, making the most of initially sparse but precise instrumentation, before blooming into an audible homage to the genre’s predecessors as well as its current greats. Furthered by “Acute Mountain Sickness Blues” and the addictive hook of “Honeytrap,” Them Jones prove that their metaphors are as memorable as their ability to shred. As the album progresses, the dreamy melody of “My Heroine Pretends” suitably precedes the delectable swagger of “Well Enough Alone,” which serves as the perfect prelude for the introspective depth of “Jennifer, My Plastic Girl” and “The Shrinking Violet Light,” which resurrects the candidness of Jay Reatard and the poetic genius of The White Stripes pre-De Stijil.

 

Ending with the delectably menacing “Now I Become Death” and trippy glory of “These Canyons,” A Mountain of Nonsense should be considered quintessential for any music lover. Them Jones’ official debut LP is well-deserving of heavy rotation and adoration. - Dianca London

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scene blog

Classic Juke-joint Appeal w/Toy Soldiers at KFN Feb. 15

Classic Juke-joint Appeal w/Toy Soldiers at KFN Feb. 15

Blues may be the tie that binds all three acts on the slate tonight at Kung Fu Necktie. Headlined by Toy Soldiers, while we await the spring release of their sophomore record The Maybe Boys, which is produced by Bill Moriarty, the group is guaranteed to bring their patented combination of steady-rolling, train-churning, funky blues and soul. Whether it’s Ron Gallo’s “no holding back vocals,” the unrelenting boogie-down groove perpetuated by the threefold marriage of bass, keys and percussion, the simple thick country-blues guitar riffs, or the sweet moans of the blues harp, this group has that classic juke-joint appeal. Their sound will celebrate the joy of the oncoming weekend of freedom. Toy Soldiers will be joined by North Carolina duo Goodnight, Texas, who also dabbles in the folk/blues milieu. August John Lutz II from Levee Drivers will be making a solo appearance playing gritty, hard-driving blues to round out The Swollen Fox-presented bill. Kung Fu Necktie, 1250 N. Front St., $12, 7:30, 21+ - Michael Colavita

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