Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Freaky stuff from Brother JT

Anyone who wants to know exactly how out-there rootsy garage and soul can get should check out the new vinyl-only album by Brother JT, Jelly Roll Gospel, reviewed yesterday at Blurt.

Brother JT
Jelly Roll Gospel
Drag City

How many guys could credibly play Terrastock and Little Stephen's Garage? Not many besides John Terlesky, AKA Brother JT. Here, on Jelly Roll Gospel, the visionary of Allentown straddles two, often separated worlds: garage rock and psychedelia. In a kind of "stone soup" approach to music making, Brother JT loads up the pot with every kind of roots music imaginable - blues, rock, R&B, soul, and reggae - then pulses it into a strange, mild-altering brew. His band, this time bassist Art DiFuria (of the Photon Band) and drummer Jamie Knerr (from Psyclone Rangers), are right there with him, pushing the limits of 1960s-influenced rock and soul. Classic rock tropes, a woozy 1960s organ, a sweltering Jimi-esque wah-wah guitar, a triumphant Sly and the whole damned Family Stone chorus are bent into fantastic new shapes. JT's music is familiar and deeply freaky at exactly the same time.


Our brother at work:

Hey, this is kinda cool…he’s playing with Bardo Pond!

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