New Music – Jovi Skyler ‘Call It A Day’ EP Review

Cooler than cool and madder than mad, every track on this EP is electric adrenaline to the veins, shockingly good and utterly invigorating.

Jovi Skyler is somewhat of a Yack favourite at this point. With our first published review for ‘Danger Land’ we knew we had found an artist that we would be coming back to time and time again and so couldn’t wait to get stuck into a review for ‘Got It Wrong’ and after that our Featured Artist Friday album review of ‘Nothing To Do’. If there is an act that perfectly embodies the Yack Magazine DIY punk middle finger to the mainstream more than Jovi Skyler we haven’t found them yet.

We kick off in the fuzzed out fumes and fury of Asshole, as it leads us into the whip and tickle of that soaring Skyler sound. The drums on this one are manic and melodic taking a step outside what you might expect to just get weird and wonderful in the dance of groove. The guitar is a dirging, diving, driving force, which allows the percussion this playful freedom and it is a fun feeling frenzy once you tune into the smile you can hear ricocheting of the skins.

Vocally this one tapped straight into what we have heard from Skyler before, it’s a punked out Jim Morrison dizzy on too much fizzy pop. It’s sincere, it’s surreal, it’s sublimely spasmodic. Lyrically it’s super interesting, diving into dreams, self-doubt, and the damaging destructive call of the chorus. The composition of the track is surprisingly complex and does a lot with the slightly shy of 4 minute run time, it has a pre-pre-chorus, pre-chorus, chorus, verses, and a cheeky little bridge.

‘Lil Bo Weep’ acts as a killer companion to ‘Asshole’, where one slides down, the other slides up, they are similar enough to leak and leech into each other, but different enough to stand up on their own. The wiggling wriggling vocal line repetition of “Lil Bo Weep” in the middle of this track reminds of the B-52s and is a particular favourite flavour in the delivery. The track doesn’t hide its message and quite honestly ejects its everything as the central theme of both the track and the EP as a whole. “Heartache, heartache, heartache.”

“She’s dying, she’s dying, life is so cruel, I don’t wanna leave, I don’t wanna leave.” It is no surprise really with a lyrical lament as on the sleeve as this that ‘Frankenstein’ picks up where the track before left off. The pair are dealing with loss and while there is a little more poetical abstract to this one, it quickly throws aside its devilish disguise to bear the scars, stitches, and sallow skin that fester underneath. Taking a breath from the rough edges and harder bedrock found in the EP’s opening, this is a moment of more true introspective searching, anguish, and cruel calm.

Is ‘Rumble’ the single greatest Jovi Skyler track to date? We certainly think so. Not only does it wrap up the themes of the EP with a gratuitous groove, but as a standalone single it serves up something strange, unique, and spellbinding. Vocally it is a blend of classic Cobain listlessness, mixed and muddied with the Monster of Michael Stipe. The track deserves an instant playback, as you dissect and ingest all the deviant delight of its disparate and dangling parts.

The guitar is bright, sparkling, and jangly, it growls as it does in the opening two tracks, but with a more focused fury now. It is restrained but chaotic, it is deafening but sweetly soft, it is monumental but completely in the pocket. There is a Dandy Warhols energy to the colliding textures and layering of the song’s sections but the “Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera…” chorus call drifts off wildly into cosmic realms that we have never even dreamt of before.

Irreverent, intelligent, and at times unintelligible, this is music played with punk panache, power, and overflowing passion. Unabashedly honest, this is music that skips, frolics, and headbangs itself gurning facefirst through any preconceived notion of cool. Wickedly tuned in to the scene and to itself every chord and kaleidoscopic skew and tone shift is precisely and perfectly place, there is a vintage veneer to each track that makes it both monumentally modern as well as a timeless classic. The emotive layering of the music begins with the poets pen, but it is the vocal delivery that really sells the depth of feeling that is poured into the EP.

Skyler always surprises you with a new side to his sound, and we can’t wait to find out where this wild, wacky, wonderful ride is blasting off to next.

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