Sunday, August 29, 2010

Judge Jackson – Drive – Review

Judge Jackson – Drive – Review

Release Date: 2010
Record Label: Curtis-Joe Records
Genre: Southern Rock

There is just something about a an old Buick and the word “Judge” that just screams for the simple times of hill-jumping in the General Lee ala Dukes Of Hazzard. I don’t know if Judge Jackson intended for that link to happen, (I’m sure they did) but this southern rock quartet that loves stanky bars and finely aged……women, certainly has the sterotype down. Song featured on Nascar? Check. Gnarly mustashes and semi mullets? Check and Check. Obscure label? Check, Curtis-Joe Records. And with their latest record “Drive,” it all seems to be coming together. Let’s just hope they don’t pull out a banjo, or I’m getting the hell out of here.

Ok, so it isn’t that bad, as it does stir up some authentic southern rock. Sadly though, it’s still very bland. For instance, “Drive“’s opener “Head Over Heals,” where you should be putting your best foot forward, not only sounds like a plain-jane radio track, but it also sports lyrics that read like they were written for Sesame Street (repeating, simplistic words, etc). As I listened a few tracks in I learned this was a reoccurring theme.

One of the main reasons that I loath country and southern things in general (except food) is because there are no detailed metaphors or well-versed lyrics/vocals/music that don’t immediately make me think of the word “hic” and the sentence “god these guys/gals are a bunch of hics.” The reason I mention this is because Judge Jackson have some of the laziest easiest musical structures and lyrics I’ve heard in some time. Even when compared to similar acts such as Journey, Shinedown, and Hinder, all who need some serious creativity classes in their own right (save Journey), “Drive” doesn’t stand up very well next to them.

The album finds redemption with “Me Then You,” which sounds like a golden nugget that Chris Daughtry dug out of his b-sides, which doesn’t sound like a “Nascar” track and instead takes shape as a fine regular rock track. And even though you might get the impression that these guys are romantic smooth talkers, their words won’t be impressing anyone that can read at higher than an 8th grade level. On the other hand, if you really aren’t aware of sophisticated music and you like songs that you can easily relate to (if you live in TX) then Judge Jackson has some simplistic tracks to occupy a short trip in your beat up buick. ~Staff

Score: 1.5/5

Track Listing:
1. Head Over Heels
2. Radio
3. Drive
4. Pickin’ Me Up
5. Letting Go
6. Me Then You
7. Just Because
8. The End
9. River
10. Meant To Be

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