Review Summary: 80s into the veinAll in One
is a tricky album. Discordant elements from rock, pop, electronic, disco, ambient, and orchestral music blend together to create a sound weirdly familiar. While it takes a roundabout route, it’s hard to argue that Jaunt doesn’t jump through hoops to mimic the quintessential “80s sound” that so many indie bands have lurched towards. While this often marks a desperate way to mine nostalgia to stand out from the woodwork, Jaunt has managed to find an artful way to make their mark against their contemporaries.
This isn’t to say that it always works—tracks like “Nostalgia for the Present Moment” pair tepid vocal harmonies against wonky instrumentals for queasy effect. Many tunes simply never find the balance in its own Frankenstein’s monster of sounds to fully take flight, but when they do, it’s even more satisfying. All in One
is at its best when it fully leans into its strange musicality, such as on “Obvious Answer” and “Callous Standard,” where the band glides past their vocal constraints into a playful, kaleidoscopic sound. At its best, Jaunt juices its influences into the essence of vague nostalgia, devoid of distracting timestamps or obvious allusions; their sound is so concentrated that comparing it to any single band is a waste of energy.
This is 80s-worship at its purest, without signposts or cheap tricks. Jaunt should be commended for creating a unique take on an approach that should long be squeezed-dry by now. While the vocals consistently lack the charisma and adventurousness of its instrumentation, and some tracks are distractingly more successful than others, those hankering for an injection of nostalgia without feeling too catered-too should enjoy a good fix of Jaunt this evening.