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MP3 of the Day #765: The Static Jacks

 
By on Monday, 1st July 2013 at 10:00 am
 

I feel like I’ve been on the Static Jacks‘ journey since nearly the beginning of time. The boys from New Jersey impressed me with their brash style straight out of the gate when they opened for the Futureheads at a Washington Black Cat show in June 2010, only to further cement their standing with me with wonderful supporting slots for Biffy Clyro in that same year and the Wombats in 2011.

Pretty soon though, I think it’ll be time to see the Static Jacks as headliners in their own right. Supporting evidence? Rolling Stone has picked up on their newest song, ‘I’ll Come Back’, and you can download it from them through this link. Grab it today. They’ll be releasing album #2, called ‘In Blue’, on the 1st of October in America (not sure about UK release info yet).

 

Live Gig Video: The Static Jacks perform ‘My Parents Lied’ in a Brooklyn furniture shop for the Bowery Presents Live

 
By on Friday, 27th April 2012 at 4:00 pm
 

Ever wondered what would happen if you let a guitar band loose in a furniture shop? Watch below as New Jersey’s Static Jacks get to do exactly that at Mona Liza Fine Furniture in Brooklyn, playing ‘My Parents Lied’. Drummer Nick Brennan even takes one for the team, using a rubbish bin as a replacement for his usual skins. Don’t go “wasting time”, hurry up and go watch the video.

The band are currently on the road in North America supporting their previous tour buddies the Wombats.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gUqMxc68dDo[/youtube]

 

Album Review: The Static Jacks – If You’re Young

 
By on Wednesday, 21st March 2012 at 12:00 pm
 

It’s frantic, it’s lively, it’s raucous and its lyrics sound like they’re being sung from a good distance away! It’s the Static Jacks with their debut album ‘If You’re Young’. Now if you’re late to the indie rock party, these guys are from Westfield, New Jersey, have been gigging since 2007, and are fronted by Ian Devaney a vocalist with a serious case of the ever so talenteds.

It seems it’s in vogue at the moment to have a frontman whose voice has that nice echoey touch, first White Lies, next the Vaccines, now the Static Jacks; it’s just nice that Devaney seems a little bit less miserable (!) The music is nothing particularly out of the ordinary; I mean it’s difficult for the first 6 or so songs to make any differentiation in pace, and we can all say a good album should just flow from song to song, but hey just throwing it out there, change of pace is good. Look up those guys Gorillaz, they do it pretty good yeah?

The opening of ‘Walls (We Can’t Work It Out) sounds pretty much identical to the Vaccines’ ‘Wreckin Ball (Ra-Ra)’s and goes on to underperform in the fact I was expecting something as good as what the Vaccines did. I was not satisfied in this way. The album does have its merits though, even though frontman Devaney begins to sound like Harry McVeigh ever more as the album goes on; on ‘Relief’ I am literally waiting for him to burst out with “You got blood on your hands/And I know it’s mine/I just need more time/So get off your low/ Let’s dance like we used to…”

It’s difficult to find anything special about these guys throughout the album, the choruses are to echoey and far off to be even the faintest bit catchy, while the songwriting is nothing short of, well, bog standard. ‘Blood Pressure’ is a rare gem among the field of mediocrity, whereas ‘This is Me Dancing’ sounds like a completely different band, with its honky tonk guitars and rolling drum beat.

Under the surface, the Static Jacks have got a nice little piece of indie pop, but nothing especially assured. I feel like these guys haven’t exactly found their sound yet. If they can replicate some of the promise of the second half of the album there is some promise for these New Jersey rockers. Maybe a leaf out of another NJ band’s book is needed, a spot of the Boss worked for the Gaslight Anthem maybe it could work for these boys. Worth a shot eh. Now, if only Glastonbury was on this year! SHUCKS!

6/10

‘If You’re Young’, the debut album from the Static Jacks, is available now.

 

Live Gig Video: The Static Jacks’ English tour set to ‘Drano-Ears’

 
By on Tuesday, 10th January 2012 at 2:00 pm
 

The Static Jacks were in England this past November (actually, they were in London when I was over there on holiday, but I unfortunately missed them) and they’ve committed this collection of clips into this video set to their tune ‘Drano-Ears’. It’s a little different than most gig videos we post (there is some gigging in here, I promise) but I thought it might be cool to look through an American band’s eyes of a tour of England.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VlhQ9GXJUJA[/youtube]

 

Video of the Moment #658: The Static Jacks

 
By on Friday, 16th December 2011 at 6:00 pm
 

The Static Jacks‘ video for ‘Into the Sun’ employs a lot of tv screens, crashing guitars and drums and Ian Devaney’s powerful voice. God, they sound amazing, what a way to start a weekend. Watch the promo below.

And yes, my heart surged with pride when I saw this single a couple days ago on sale at Piccadilly Records in Manchester’s Northern Quarter. A lil’ bit of New Joisie in the North!

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ii3hBHG1Yt8[/youtube]

 

Live Review: The Wombats with Static Jacks and Postelles at 9:30 Club, Washington, DC – 21st October 2011

 
By on Monday, 24th October 2011 at 2:00 pm
 

Months ago when the Wombats autumn North American tour was announced, I was even more incredulous when I saw the entire bill for the second gig in DC as the 9:30 Club. The openers were to be the Static Jacks (who I’d seen open for Futureheads and Biffy Clyro last year) and one of my personal favourites, New York’s Postelles. So I already knew with three bands that I love playing on one night was going to be an event of epic proportions. I just didn’t know how big the Wombats were in Washington. The show wasn’t sold out, but I think a lot of curious people showed up last minute, because the venue felt rammed. The ratio was definitely in favour of screaming teenage girls, but it turned out that it worked in favour of the openers.

The Static Jacks were on first. I was sure few people there had heard of them and they would have their work cut out for them. This was the first time I’d seen them since they became signed with American indie label Fenway, where they are labelmates with Doves and the Cribs. It could have been part the great soundsystem at the 9:30 but they sounded so amazingly tight. Just brilliant. It was one of those moments where I felt proud to be a fan early on: to be able to see them progress. There’s no way but up, up and away for this band now. Sing-song ‘Blood Pressure’, a song about the very real angst of growing up, was the highlight of the set for me, though ‘Girl Parts’, with its punk sensibility, got everyone dancing along to singer Ian Devaney’s powerfully delivered vocals. After the show, teenage girls were clamouring to get photos and CDs of their new album ‘If You’re Young’ signed. That was a tearful moment.

The Postelles have a pretty large and vocal university kid-age following in DC, but on this night they probably gained a load more younger fans. After a blinding set from their New Jersey little brothers on this tour, they had to rise to the challenge of getting the crowd on their side. I shouldn’t have worried: the Postelles are consummate performers, singer Daniel Balk getting the whole audience involved with the final refrain ‘Hey Little Sister’, a song which was dedicated to me. (That was all kinds of awesome.) They previewed two new songs, one of which is called ‘Tidal Wave’ and fit perfectly alongside songs from their self-titled debut released this past summer.

And then came the Wombats. This was the first time they’d come to our town but it was obvious as I was waiting in the queue before doors that they had a lot of teenage fans. This was one night where I didn’t have to worry about beer on my shoes. I always wear earplugs to gigs but they were requisite this night, as girls screamed every time bassist/keyboardist Tord Øverland-Knudsen jumped around with his Fender. That man probably sweated off his body weight as he bounced across the stage. (I had an interview with Tord before the show, and the interview is coming soon to TGTF.) In comparison, Matthew “Murph” Murphy was more stoic, the words of songs so beloved to so many of the gig-goers crossing his lips to manic screams of delight. ‘Girls and Fast Cars’ and ‘Techno Fan’ went down superbly, kids pogo-ing as if their lives depended on it.

I should note that the 9:30 Club has a strict crowd surfing policy. Usually. So crowd surfing is unheard of here. After the 10th crowd surfer was carried above and over the barrier and then shooed back into the crowd, I stopped counting. Murph commented they’d never seen crowd surfers at an American show, so I think it’s safe to say that the Wombats are never going to forget this night in Washington. Ladies and gentlemen, I think I’ve found my best gig of 2011.

But the night was not over. Tord and drummer Dan spun tunes at nearby DC9 (where I explained to Tord I’d seen his countrymen Casiokids just the past Monday) and not only did they play some great tunes (M83, Blur, Rage Against the Machine, and Passion Pit, just to name a couple), writer Cheryl square-danced with Dan on the DC9 stage. You can’t make this stuff up, kids. Just a really good night out, the likes that are likely not to be repeated anytime soon.

After the cut: more photos and set lists.
Continue reading Live Review: The Wombats with Static Jacks and Postelles at 9:30 Club, Washington, DC – 21st October 2011

 
 
 

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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF was edited by Mary Chang, based in Washington, DC.

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