3. Black Heart
4. Tongue Tied
5. The Art Of Falling
6. Juno (Stripped)
Sometimes it shocks me how many different ways I write a review only to erase it and start again. I have enjoyed this new EP by Salvation Jayne since I first played it. Several bands have come to mind as I have the guitar riffs attack me and the hooks sink their teeth into my brain. While the material is not as dense or angry, the old band Die Cheerleader has came to mind as well as more traditional 90’s Rock and even some 80’s Pop is buried in here. Salvation Jayne have done a fine job of carving out their own identity.
‘Cortez’ makes sense as one of the singles since my notes have it listed as an alternative hit in waiting. With scorching cool guitars leading a cool rhythm based riff by Holly Kinnear, this song makes a great first impression with Chess Smith’s vocals sounding great. Juno feels fun and quirky with its drums (Tor Charlesworth) and bass (Dan Lucas) start sounding like an old 80’s Rock song as Smith sings the first verse over just them before a wash of guitars appears post verse. I really like the vocal dynamics within the verse, and the simple chorus is better because the vocals a little deeper in the mix, giving it more of a live feel.
‘Black Heart’ features a huge vocal that is one of the reasons I thought of the aforementioned Die Cheerleader. With the heavy riff and bridge riding a cool groove, the song sails to another level with my favorite chorus on the EP. I love the heaviness and noise on this one, especially the conviction in Smith’s vocals. Following up this one was not going to be easy, but the band have no problem with ‘Tongue Tied.’ The rolling groove leading into a great chorus with a second verse that initially feels a bit more like a hip hop by Smith. The guitar tones really remind me of Therapy? with one of the major differences again being the space that Salvation Jayne puts in their music.
Not content to rest on those 4 great songs, the band adds the melodic ‘The Art Of Falling,’ which reminds me more of a mellow dark Grunge song from the 90’s. It is more Candlebox than Alice in Chains with the guitar ringing in time with a heartbeat. Wrapping up the EP is the very mellow ‘Juno (Stripped).’ The sampled conversations in the background keep pulling me in closer to the speaker. This is actually one of my favorites from the EP as I love the way the focus of the song shifts to Smith. She sings with a soft touch and some great inflections in tone.
Salvation Jayne are firmly on my radar with this EP making me a fan. If the band can get a break here or there, they definitely have the songs to win over crowds. It would be awesome to see them and someone like the Digital Criminals support Hands Off Gretel on tour as I think there would be a lot of crossover between the audiences where everyone would win. In the meantime, be sure to check out this EP and their previous release so that you can be prepared to sing along with them when they hit your town.
‘Salvation Jayne’ is released November 16th.
Website - https://www.salvationjayne.co.uk/
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/salvationjayne/
Review - Gerald Stansbury