The PJP Band - And So It Goes (Review)
Review by Jack Foley
EXPECTATIONS were high for And So It Goes, the debut album from The PJP Band.
Hotly tipped off the back of their American Lover EP in 2011 and Radio 1 support for their single, I Am A Racer last October, their album has also been compiled with respected rock producer Pete Miles (The King Blues, Sonic Boom 6, We Are The Ocean, Dry The River).
Unfortunately, while accomplished and hard-rocking for a three-piece that are predominantly keyboard led, the album only impresses in fits and starts. You may want to like it more than you actually do, even though there are a handful of standout moments.
Among those, final track Embrace Her is a genuinely rousing conclusion that is one of two great ballads on the LP and a great way to finish things off (the other great ballad being The Chalk Divide).
Patrick’s emphatic vocal style, which is reminiscent of The Killers’ Brandon Flowers throughout, are also employed to stirring effect on the album’s first song proper, Disciplines, which also drops one of the most rousing choruses on the LP (complete with chant-worthy lyrics “we just can’t quite while we no best… or do we know better than to settle for less?”). It’s an empowering song that, coming so early, promises much.
Another decent chorus is to be found on the anthemic Ole! We Aint Prey (which maximizes the potential offered by its melodic ‘ole!’ refrain), even though the verses let it down slightly, while former single I Am A Racer is another easygoing delight, which appropriately zips along amid rapid-fire drums, funky guitar riffs and a euphoric chorus that declares: “I am a racer and you are the carborator”.
Elsewhere, though, tracks like Might Or Moses and Vicious Luck sound like fillers (albeit, in the case of the latter, delivered at full speed ahead), while the slower tempo Sweet Tokyo with its unsettling themes (“what did you see in the wood-shed? Was it so nasty”) doesn’t quite convince and feels over-wrought and Karm & Condition feels like sub-par INXS meets Madness.
Stone Cold Cinema is another power ballad moment that feels over-cooked vocally and which is more likely to get on your nerves than impress.
Put together, And So it Goes struggles to work as a satisfying whole. But it does have its moments – and those moments are good, suggesting a bright future still lies ahead for them.
Download picks: Disciplines, I Am A Racer, Ole! We Aint Prey, The Chalk Divide, Embrace Her