Gary Louris is quite successful as a musician and even worked on Grammy Award-winning albums by Tedeschi Trucks Band and the Chicks. Thirteen years after his debut album as a solo artist, he is going for another recording labeled on his own name. The album is called Jump For Joy and has been released on 4th June 2021.
Gary Louris – About The Artist
Gary Louris is a singer, songwriter and guitarist from Toledo, Ohio, South of Detroit. He ws born on 10th March 1955 and is majorly working in the folk music and alternative country context. Together with bassist Marc Perlman, he is the only member of the band The Jayhaws, which has been active since the founding of the band until now. He also worked with some other projects like Golden Smog. In 2008, he released Vagabonds, his only album as a solo artist so far. The album featured The Bangles founder Susanna Hoffs and later had an acoustic EP spin-off, Acoustic Vagabonds.
Gary Louris – Jump For Joy – Track by Track
The ten track album lasts 40 minutes.
1. Almost Home
Guitar scrumming, clapping and a happy voice. Almost Home is a lovely opener to the album, telling the story about being on the road, but feeling close to your beloved one just by deeping thinking of her. Somehow a simply made-up song… But just a good listen – the ease of a pop song is just a nice element in this song.
2. Living In Between
Living In Between is just the topic of the second song: living between two decision, not really knowing what is right and what is wrong. The song is slower, but again combines the sobriety of a good folk song with almost mild-feeling pop flavors. Well done.
3. White Squirrel
Ever feel like a white squirrel
In the daylight
Against the dark green grass
Sticking out like a sore thumb
Gary Louris is rather quiet, but also melancholic in this third track. The ease of pop feels faded, the song is rather gloomy like a blues song – but it is to monotonous for that. You will likely neither sing-a-long to this song nor dance in your lifetime. But it creates a magical atmosphere.
4. New Normal
New Normal starts with an easy keyboard theme, which could also back an Andreas Dorau track. A song which gives a nice feeling of freedom and enjoying yourself. Nice selection as a single release, indeed.
5. Mr Updike
Mr Updike can most likely best described as a folk rock song. The guitar riffs give a nice backing of the song. A song which is directly addressing John Updike, the writer of the novel The Witches of Eastwick. A bit of cheeky with a touch of humor. really enjoy the way Louris is describing the scenery in this song.
The last single release of the album so far (in order of the album) is a nice blend of folk and country elements. But then, there is still that easy, happy touch. The vibe in the music which makes it special. Which turns it into a Gary Louris original one.
7. Too Late The Key
I enjoy the work on the acoustic guitar while listening to Too Late The Key. Apart from that, a rather traditional recording, which does not have that much of that Louris touch. Thus, it is somehow hidden between the other (more characteristic) songs.
8. One Way Conversation
One Way Conversation closes with
It’s a one-way conversation
Just a one-wy conversation
The song is about exactly that: being in a situation where the dialog is just not working out… No matter how hard you try. This time, electronic sounds and the piano / keyboards work as a very nice background.
9. Jump For Joy
You had to wait quite a while before the album is finally presenting its title track. The song is rather dark in sound, if there weren’t scattered sound here and there. Nice work on the microphone, but overall, not as good as I initially thought.
10. Dead Man’s Burden
The album closes with the epic eight minute Dead Man’s Burden. The song feels to start as a quite straight folk track – but finally, the song takes some suprising changes. Otherwise, I would just be too boring. Great finale.
Gary Louris – Jump For Joy – Spotify
Here is Jump For Joy on Spotify:
Gary Louris – Jump For Joy – My View
I like Gary Louris style, the way he is playing and mixing influences, which you would expect from other genres, to his very own blend of music. Jump For Joy is very versatile, sometimes surprising. There are some tracks which are individually really good ones. Some are below that. He does a unique style – and that already gave him quite a fan base. The album will help to strengthen that. Good one!
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