Jesus Jones – there’s a blast from the past. Big in the early 90s, they pretty much disappeared at the end of the 90s, with their final album, “London” failing to sell well in 2001. They’ve done a few shows since then but had really disappeared off the radar for many people including me, whereas some bands from that era have maintained a slightly higher profile – the Wonderstuff or Pop will eat itself for example.
Now though, Jesus Jones are back with a new album, Passages. Given the passage of time, the question is will this be classic Jesus Jones or a shadow of what they used to be – always an important question when bands emerge from hibernation and release something new. The other question is whether this will feel dated or fresh.
Well, to be honest I wasn’t expecting a great deal from this album, so it was a very pleasant surprise when I hit play and listened to the album. There’s no sense of a band past their prime, or having moved on so far from their roots that they sound like a totally different band, there’s just a re-energised Jesus Jones. If anything they sound a bit more like the Wonderstuff than I remember them, but I’m certainly not complaining.
There’s a 90s feel to the album, but rather than calling it dated, I’d say it’s capitalising on peoples nostalgia. Among the modern pop and rock releases, this stands out as different. Fans of Jesus Jones in the 90s are almost certainly going to enjoy this new album – I certainly am.
Check out the video for “Grateful”. One thing I would say is that the finished album sounds so much better than the video (which they released a year ago) – the version on the album has a lot more impact with a much sharper sound, but the video will give you an idea of what to expect.
As well as having the new album come out in April, the band (which is still the original lineup) are touring, playing a number of gigs between March and May plus two festivals, Bearded Theory in May and Camp Bestival in July. Judging by how this album sounds then those live shows should be great. With the live shows and this new album Jesus Jones fans are already in for a good year, but there’s still more – they’re also re-issuing their back catalogue along with bonus tracks and rarities.
Passages will be released on 20th April 2018
1. Where are all the dreams
2. Suck it up
5. Rounding out the square hole
6. How’s this even going down
7. So welcome
9. One day at a time