Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Jai-Alai Savant - Flight of the Bass Delegate

The Jai-Alai Savant
Flight of the Bass Delegate (Gold Standard Labora)
Grade: A-

Download: The Jai-Alai Savant- "White On White Crime"
Download: The Jai-Alai Savant- "When I Grow Up"
Download: The Jai-Alai Savant- "Akebono"

I know that I've already written about these guys before, but I just picked up this record last wee and I've listened the shit out of it ever since. Flight of The Bass Deligate is a party record that just may unite nerds and rastas alike. It's an incredibly good and melodic record.

Basically, The Jai-Alai Savant are pumped-up, post-punk version of The Police but updated for the 21st century. The Jai-Alai Savant have a stronger emphasis on the rock and reggae aspects of their music, and are also without a singer who isn't constantly enamored with himself. "Scarlett Johannson, Why Don't You Love Me?" smartly recycles the staccato guitar riffs of Andy Summers, while other tracks like "Akebono" and "Sugar Free" feature the kind of bass lines that should make dub fans salivate.

Every song on here has an insane amount of groove to make you unleash your inner private dancer and the melodies are strong enough to the point that they will stay in your head for ages. Seriously, this is the record that you put on while you are having your friends over and grilling veggie burgers. It's the summer record for hipster BBQ's.

The record's first proper song, "Arcane Theories," has the kind of harmonizing that The Police were known for, but the rhythm section is more pounding and the guitar more fuzzy. The record kicks off on an amazing high and keeps on going, through the self-deprecating "Scarlett," the movie-sample heavy "The Low Frequent See" (the quotes I recognized were from Enter The Dragon and the old radio show "The Shadow") and the soundscape-laden and bass-driven "Transmissions From The Dub Delegate."

This record is just one solid highlight after another. It very well be the most enjoyable record from a Chicago band I've heard this year. It's certainly the album that will get the most play when the guests I'm hosting demand to hear something funky and exciting that they can get down to.

(Jonathan Graef)

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