Desoto Jones
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Desoto Jones


Band Alternative Rock


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"by the this time next year, I guarantee Desoto Jones will be selling out this venue."-(before desoto jones took the stage in March @ The Trocadero in Philly - Joey Mahoney- Top Philadelphia promoter

Desoto Jones will have a breakout year in 2008. -Joe Cuello, MTV

Desoto Jones music will be featured on various MTV shows including: "pimp my ride", "newlyweds", "date my mom", "one bad trip" and many more-december 2004.

At this point in time Desoto Jones music is running as background music on 7 MTV programs - Joe Cuello-director of creative licensing @ MTV

"Desoto’s fans clung to the barriers, singing along with Owen, and savoring every moment and lyric. They had told me to expect an energetic live show, filled with some rock and roll and “non-tight jeans.” Energetic wasn’t the word. The stage show was intense, with constant movement and passion." - Campus Philly-write Brittany Sturges

KEEPING UP WITH THIS JONES WILL NOT BE EASY. Everything about Desoto Jones is big: big hooks, big harmonies, and an ability to put a big smile on your face during every song on Aurora. They waste no time getting started, either; the anthemic opening track, "Speedbump", is simply booming, gorgeously layered vocals and an epic feel amid the crashing guitars in the background. While their command of midtempo songs is what really stands out, the band's quicker forays meet equal success. "Cap Gun" matches some extremely quick riffing with urgently delivered vocals for a more hard-hitting sound. Desoto Jones are versatile, but throughout the course of the record they don't try to do too much; this continuity is what makes the album. In keeping with the theme, you can expect big things from this band-they're already poised to deliver. 4 out of 5 stars - Jordan Rogowski, Alternative Press Magazine - Alternative Press Magazine

If there is such a thing as an independent “modern rock” record, then this is it! Desoto Jones brings forth solid musicianship, heartfelt lyrics, and a true passion for music that shines through on their sophomore effort, Aurora. Without hesitation the record kicks into high gear, its flow is seamless and the guitar-work is something to be celebrated. Aurora simply does not let up, from its blazing opener to the subtle acoustic-laced ballad “Nonfiction” on through the fitting closer, “Waiting.” I can see this album spanning a vast array of fans, as there really is something for everyone. I couldn’t let this release fly below the radar, and neither should you. Deep Elm Records has begun limiting their releases to 1,000 copies, so be sure to pick up Aurora! -

It’s amazing how ignorant “critics” like myself and many others in today’s “blogosphere” can be. I just got done reading another review of Desoto Jones‘ Deep Elm Records debut, Aurora and think the reviewer missed it entirely. (Read it HERE) First of all, this is not a Pop-Punk album (Adam Staszewski on lead guitars can actually riff). This is not an Emo album. Aurora is a Rock & Roll album. Period. Sing-along choruses, passionate lyrics and genuine emotion and care was put into this album to create an exciting and irresistible debut.

While it’s true that Desoto Jones aren’t covering new territory with their music (really . . . who is these days?), they stay true to their influences and create and album that is on par with any great rock album that has come along this past decade so far. Hints of Jimmy Eat World, Third Eye Blind, Hot Water Music, and Foo Fighters are obvious, but this doesn’t result in any sort of copy-cat songs. In fact, think of each of those bands’ best albums, throw them in a blender and you can describe Aurora. Fueled with emotion, passion and hope, Aurora is an album you’ll want to re-visit numerous times. -

If you don’t like emo, you probably won’t like Desoto Jones. The Philly five-piece wear their oversized heart on their jet-black sleeve, and they’re signed to Deep Elm, the label that gave us not one but 11 volumes of Emo Diaries compilations. To be fair, it’s also the label that helped make Appleseed Cast and Planes Mistaken for Stars household names in the all-ages set, such that anything on Deep Elm carries a seal of approval.

It’s easy to see why Desoto Jones got signed. Their sound is gigantic, with Owen Staszewski’s scrubbed-clean vocals pushed way up front while the rest of the band—including Owen’s brothers Adam and Justin—crash into each other behind him. There are traces of every testosterone-fueled generation of arena titans, from bombastic classic rock to slick latter-day emo.

They aren’t even afraid to cite ’90s alt-rockers Stone Temple Pilots and Third Eye Blind as influences, which may explain the frightful accessibility of their first album Aurora, released a few weeks back. “Nonfiction” has a glossy acoustic twang and loss-of-innocence theme your kid sister could love, whereas the massive hook and universal chorus of “Giant Magnets” almost makes for a country-style sing-along.

Those two have the biggest crossover potential, but Deep Elm adherents will prefer the Promise Ring-ish pop drive of “Don’t Fail Me” and the prog-punk freefall of the opening “Speed Bump.” The lyrics throughout are better than expected, setting the scene the way radio hits are supposed to: “I woke up to The White Album skipping and a sore throat from the cold fan” (“Out of the Blue”).

Aurora may cast its net awfully wide, but that too is expected of mainstream rock releases these days. Besides, Desoto Jones are catchy enough to hopscotch through styles with little cause for complaint. - Doug Wallen -

My initial reaction to this band was a little bit of fresh air in the middle of a some times stuffy scene. Over the course of a few weeks and getting a chance to get familiar with the bands newest release “Aurora” I’ve come to like it even more.

Desoto Jones plays a mix of a few different styles some of which include punk, rock, and alternative. One of the things that is both a pro and con of the album is the less than stellar sound quality. It’s obvious why it would be a con but at the same time the production quality does lend its self to the style of music the band plays. The quality was something that sort of hit while I was listening to the album on decent speakers and on top of others things the music just did not sound as big, and full as it should. At the end of the day, you may never notice and in that case it doesn’t matter.

One of my personal favorite songs and one that is departure for the band is “nonfiction”. As the song settles into it’s acoustic grove a piano jumps into the mix plucking notes in a calm fashion as the vocals build the song with their honest lyrics. The song should stick out to listeners whether it’s a favorite or not because of it’s attention grabbing style.

I don’t think there is one quote, unquote bad song on the album, but at the same time I don’t think there is a song that is hands down the best one. Some like “Giant Magnets” stick in your head longer with it’s incredibly catchy chorus, or “Sweet Sun” with it’s soaring vocals. Desoto Jones is a band that has a hugely successful road ahead of them and “Aurora” is just the first step. -

Fearless Records A&R reps pay attention! While you continue to sign pop-rock bands that make critics vomit, a relatively unknown band from the Jersey/Philadelphia area has quietly released what is sure to be one of the top pop-rock records of 2008. The quintet goes by the name DESOTO JONES, and their debut full-length released by Deep Elm is titled Aurora. And they've managed to successfully make a genuine pop-rock album that does everything right.

Upon first hearing Aurora, I was struck by the band's ability to blend charged rock n' roll energy with the gracefulness of melodic pop. While that last sentence may read like the description of a million other bands out there, DESOTO JONES quickly set themselves apart from the pack. Opener "Speed Bump" is a quality introduction to the band: perfect songwriting, incredibly strong vocals, and hooks galore. Additionally, none of it comes off as contrived or out-dated despite the fact they share commonalities with well-seasoned bands like JIMMMY EAT WORLD and THE FOO FIGHTERS. Another band worth noting in the construction of DESOTO JONES is SPITALFIELD. The chorus of "Don't Fail Me" is dead-on SPITALFIELD, matching anything from their brilliant Stop Doing Bad Things. With that band now out of the picture, DESOTO JONES easily has room to grow into the type of band SPITALFIELD always could have become.

"Giant Magnets," the third track, is a bit less propulsive than the two openers, but it is nevertheless another solid song. It's a mid-tempo affair, and while I think the album has one too many moments like this, the band does it well. Take "Nonfiction" for example. Placed smack dab in the middle of the album, this ballad makes use of acoustic guitars and piano, leading one to believe it's the kind of emotional garbage that typically appears on albums of this nature. As the song plays on, though, DESOTO JONES are really convincing and end up writing a song that somehow breaks the monotony of the normal pop-rock routine.

For the most part, the band plays it safe lyrically. There are a few songs that may speak on relationship problems, but the lyricist does it in a respectable manner, mostly talking about his own issues with commitment or finding love ("commitment comes and scares me away again"). "Nonfiction" represents the narrator's loss of innocence: "long ago I used to feel safe beneath this imaginary shield, big and bright/ I stood up straight with confidence that nothing could ever come inside/ the veil is off and now I see the swollen face and crooked teeth of a world less divine." Moreover, "Working Class Daydream" focuses on his battles with his own existence: "to be alive is so exhausting sometimes it's impossible to see the point/ ... / I'm worrying about this life, I'm wondering if I should try/ I'm worrying about this life, over and over/ we will push 'til we're done/ we won't slow down for anyone." As I said, the band keys into issues that are rather safe and relatable on a broad level.

Aurora has it all if you're into pop-rock music. Relatable lyrics, strong vocals, quality instrumentation, and top-notch songwriting. The songs are catchy, memorable, sincere, and worthy of both air-guitar/drumming and singing along. DESOTO JONES make the kind of music that makes me excited to be a fan of music and, more specifically, to be writing about it. Thanks to the band for writing an album that can restore one's faith in rock music any time. -


"Self Titled "- EP-November 2003
"The Troubleshooting Is Over" -EP - April 2005
"Stay Awake Stay Alive"- EP - June 2006
"Aurora"-LP- January 2008 Deep Elm Records



Desoto Jones is a band of musicians from New Jersey who have always been passionate about music. Each member has their own eclectic tastes but they share a common love in the music that they create and play together. Desoto Jones is guided by the three Staszewski brothers, and two long-time friends, Ean Kyler and Chris Gill. This band is their ultimate musical release because when it comes to creating music they are able to put the things they know they want to hear into songs without blatantly indulging themselves or disregarding any standards of quality. One might say that they essentially follow a rock n roll philosophy of no-bull and powerful delivery, but they are never at a loss for innovative sounds. Desoto Jones utilizes those sounds without boring themselves or the listener. DJ recorded and self-released three EP's on their own, "Self-Titled", "The Troubleshooting is Over" and "Stay Awake Stay Alive." In the winter of 2007, Desoto Jones has finally found the sound they've been looking for with a full length album called "Aurora", which has been released in a limited pressing on Deep Elm Records. The album has gotten some great reviews including 4 out of 5 stars by Alternative Press Magazine (March 2008). MTV also named DJ 1 of 5 "Bands to Break" in 2008. Desoto Jones continues moving forward with great momentum: writing new material, enjoying a high level of inspiration and creativity between each other, and playing shows to deliver their own gripping and emotional blend of rock music to people's ears.

Desoto Jones' new single, "She Hit The Wall", is receiving significant airplay on Philly's Radio 104.5FM and the band was voted Best Local Band of 2008 by 104.5 listeners.