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Cosmo Jarvis - Hum As You Hitch/Son Of A Bitch

Cosmo Jarvis, Hum As You Hitch/Son Of A Bitch

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

COSMO Jarvis is nothing if not talented. A self-described new kind of artist, he’s a songwriter and a singer, as well as a filmmaker, storyteller, poet, iconoclast, Jessica Alba enthusiast and campaigner for the equal treatment of gay pirates.

Even his new album isn’t done by half measures. A double CD release, entitled Hum As You Hitch/Son of a Bitch, it’s a witty, insightful and heartfelt collection of songs that veer between acoustic ballads, punky-pop and shades of hip-hop.

The first, Humasyouhitch, is described as the ‘fun’ side, and is packed with playful vignettes of sexual awakening or, as Cosmo self-deprecatingly puts it, songs written “when I was discovering I had a penis and girls had vaginas and all that kind of thing”.

The songs capture both the awkwardness and the ecstasy with a deftness of phrase rarely found.

But Sonofabitch finds Cosmo really demonstrating the wisdom lurking in a heart that’s not so much dark as immensely human. It’s an interesting mix and frequently addictive, proving that there’s real talent to match the ambition.

By virtue of the shifting tones, CD1 delivers the best time and is packed with breezy, chirpy singles in waiting. Kicking off with the melodic, recorder-laden You Got Your Head , it’s a cheeky intro that lays the template for a really fine listen.

Further highlights come in the form of the Just Jack-a-like Mel’s Song, which is a rap that’s dedicated to a girl who, while probably more obtainable, still seems to be just out of reach; the mandolin heavy former single and radio favourite She’s Got You, which is dripping with sunshine melodies and a Passion Pit-style euphoria, and the out-and-out cut and thrust rock of Wild Humans, which boasts an inspiring sing-along chorus.

And that’s not even mentioning my personal highlight, Jessica Alba’s Number, a light-hearted romp through the fantasy little black book of billboard girls that Cosmo will probably never date, but which name-checks everyone from Jessica Simpson (“who’d think I was an ignoramous”) and Cameron Diaz and Showgirls.

Get Happy, meanwhile, is a breezy offering that careers into a calypso celebration over the chorus, which invites you to get happy and succeeds in putting you there.

Such songs do come in stark contrast to CD2, which is heavier, darker but no less impressive with the likes of Mummy’s Been Drinking and Sunshine And Dandelions among the standouts.

You’ll want to catch up with Cosmo fast, however, as his next album is already written and for his next project he’s planning to make a short film about a man who takes himself hostage. He’s a tireless performer… but one who looks set to be around for some time.

Download picks: Mel’s Song, Wild Humans, She’s Got You, Jessica Alba’s Number, Get Happy, Mummy’s Been Drinking

Track listing:
Disc 1

  1. You Got Your Head
  2. Mel’s Song
  3. She’s Got You
  4. Maxine
  5. Wild Humans
  6. Jessica Alba’s Number
  7. Get Happy
  8. Kate Wuz Here
  9. Crazy Screwed Up Lady

Disc 2

  1. Clean My Room
  2. Mummy’s Been Drinking
  3. Gone Like You
  4. Sunshine And Dandelions
  5. Problems
  6. Sort Yourself Out
  7. He Only Goes Out On Tuesdays
  8. Royal Fuck Up, The
  9. Lonely Stroll