Review Summary: devilishly good, without the fear of sin. gather 'round, the family's here.
Well isn’t this nice? Here we have a band that inspires togetherness marrying the most soul eccentric name of the new decade with a sound that follows their ambitious walk. In short, I have no idea where Happy Jawbone Family Band came from, what their name refers to or why they’re so damn good. I just know; they’re so damn good. They’re a reflection to a childhood everyone chooses to remember instead of the actuality of that hardened past most chose to forget. There’s an overwhelming endearing nature that lathers, HJFB’s not-so-proper debut, [i]Tastes the Broom[/I,] with innocent conviction, filling to the brim the albums quota for whimsical attributes. Individually, the songs on Tastes the Broom
might sound obtusely insane. Surely a band stuffing toddler-esque melody’s into, often frantic, blues rock is expected to have such a silly moniker; these tracks dabble unabashedly in lo-fi production all to curtail some excitement that’s hidden from view until all of a sudden you’re swimming in a thick, gaze-like, sound. All this culminates for one of the most, for lack of a better word here, cute albums to have surfaced in recent memory. Dripping with love and walking with the heart of gold HJFB don’t want your attention so much as they need
It all hangs there in that last sentence. The difference between wanting the attention of another and needing it has often held battles for ones sanity. That longing for affection leads to this whirlwind of emotions, which, stripped to their core, resemble those of a child. The simplicity of this understanding, everyone having some inner child that wants to be loved, is where HJFB focus much of their attention with Tastes the Broom
. In addition to being playfully sincere, the band is not without their most welcomed yang to the solemn half’s yin, a knack for comedy that elevates Tastes the Broom
to all new lighthearted heights. From the Christmas driven “Martian Santa” saluting the Beach Boy’s while left-turning toward an old western tinged quirkiness to “Fireflies Made Out of Dust”, creeping so slow with no direction it reaches some form of meta, a common state of nirvana that band seek often. Along with bugs and glass, HJFB like to dabble in their self-referential universe that has them recycling only the memories choose to remember. An explanation as to why everything in HJFB’s world is so childishly “perfect”.
That insistence to make their more affectionate moments difficult to hear is an excellent look at the relationship between the happier moments compared to those wrought with more feeling
–if you will. They keep the energy and understandability high in both regard, but the moment their songs turn toward the serious that view becomes distorted, and you’re the child who avoids rainy days like the plague. If only it were this simple sometimes. To control the influence negative impacts/events have on our view of life; we’d all soon enough find the joy that HJFB tap. So screw the lyrics, clap your hands, and practice whistling cause the Happy Jawbone Family Band are here to dance/sing/sound-effect the bad times away.