Jaco, aka Jake Waitzman, drops his debut album, entitled You Know, today, on Cornelius Chapel Records. You Know features dazzling contributions from Les Nuby (lead guitar) and Greg Slamen (bass).
Based in Birmingham, Alabama, aka The Magic City, Jaco has played drums with outfits like Vulture Whale, The Wes McDonald Plan, and Ham Bagby, pummeling the skins ‘in the pocket.’ On his own time, Jaco, his mind chock-full of music and lyrics, pursued a home recording project, laying down tracks teeming with powerful guitars, tasty hooks, and innovative arrangements.
The result is 11-tracks of indie-rock and power pop, called You Know.
First up is “On The Ground,” featuring a soaring Styx-like intro, followed by emerging percussion flowing into the glare of shimmering guitars, tight with metallic colors. The raw energy of the track is vaguely reminiscent of Jack White, only thicker.
Not-to-be-missed tracks include “Blackboard,” which rides tinctures of ZZ Top-like boogie flavors, and features gentle radiant vocals. Jangle-filled guitars, slightly muffled, infuse the harmonics with washes of pewter colors. An inventive synth solo gives the music elusive retro savors.
Opening on rumbling drums and abrading guitars, “Say Goodbye” blends hefty rock impetus with spiraling synths, as well as sharply clinking piano tones into a dense captivating tune. Slightly nasal vocals travel over the layers of harmonics, suffusing the lyrics with melancholy.
“Shoe” combines hints of punk-lite guitars with aromas of British Invasion rock. Chaffing guitars provide a vast wall-of-sound effect topped by what sounds like a Dobro or mandolin, crowning the bushy guitars with beads of bright accents.
“Again” conjures up memories of CSN&Y because of its grimy crunching rhythm and dark vocal colors. There’s a rampant visceral quality to the harmonics on this track, imbuing it with primal oomph. The last track, “All Your Love” is reminiscent of Tom Petty, full of dirty guitars, an infectious potent rhythm, and enormous sonic pressure.
With You Know, Jaco delivers fresh brawny music, insistently potent rhythms, beau coup dirty guitars, and scrumptiously supple vocals.