steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
info opinion

Jada B Nixon

"Psychological Service" CDR

HHR Records

Genre: rock, pub rock

Aug 21 2008

Poorly designed and poorly printed, Jada B Nixon's debut CD faced an inauspicious start in the hands of this trusty reviewer, but fortunately I'm always willing to give things a fair shake. A Scottish fivepiece, Jada B Nixon create classic rock inspired music that is remarkably melodic for its relative obscurity. Despite their noble influences, however, the majority of these songs turn out flat - they produce some decent hooks, but the delivery is far from tight, and the songwriting is uninventive.

To put Jada B Nixon's music into context, they seem to fit best under the "pub rock" header. I tend to imagine these folks as gaggle of middle-aged men who played a handful of shows at local bars and, upon the well-intended advice of friends and family, decided to put together an album. The resulting record has a few winners - crowd-pleasers from their nights on stage - but has been watered down with several less-inspired songs that were written to fill up time. Indeed, "Divine Intervention" and "Jane Hears Voices" boast spirited melodies that come through even under the modest recording conditions and limited vocal and instrumental skills. Other songs are remarkable in other ways - "Neighbours" has great energy and a neat spacey vibe, but lacks a decent hook, and "Ford Escort" is a goofy take on a familiar melody. Then, there are the tracks that really shouldn't have made it past the first take: beyond-inane acid-blues track "The Rascist," flat "Keep It Small," measly slow song "2nd Time Around," brutal "Johnny"... In fact, it seems as if the longer this record goes on, the worse it becomes.

Psychological Service is certainly a half-baked effort, although it has more moments than might have been predicted. Nixon's songwriting borrows heavily (or, rather, entirely) from the past, which makes this whole thing seem somewhat dated, but several melodies prosper nonetheless. Suffice to say, the family and friends of the band members who buy this disc can sleep tight knowing other bands' family and friends have it much worse. As for everyone else? Go find your own band.

jada b nixon's myspace


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 14 tracks + 1 hidden, 61:09, distributed by the band]