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"Review of 'Deletist' - Death + Taxes Mag"

There are moments on this NYC quartet's impressive debut, Deletist, that'll sweet-talk the superhero tucked inside of you. You'll feel bulletprrof, gutsier - you'll want to run faster or maybe even hurl lightning bolts. A high-powered romp through abrasive buildups and breakdowns, Deletist roars through nine colossal tracks shrouded in a doomy feral intensity. while Scott Holland's spasmodic vocal assault - a piercing falsetto and a fierce roar - dominates much of Deletist, hte melodious hooks, caterwauling guitar licks and skintight instrumentation brings this 38 minute workout to life. The NYC quartet deserves audiences rising to their feet for what is an unvarnished, rousing debut of sheer bravado. -Kristopher Yodice - Death + Taxes Magazine

"Deletist Review - Left of the Dial"

During the most impressive moments, the band propels listeners through an enigmatic, dark velvet emblazoned, art-prog-metal wall of sound that reaches a pinnacle for me on the opener “Dracula.” Think of a blend consisting of Dinosaur Jr., the long-forgotten Big F, Fucking Champs, and yes, even Cheap Trick meets AC/DC, if only for certain vocal gesticulations. Tunes like “The Leader” may start off weird and snakey, but they end in a rock’n’roll inferno that would make any stoner’s head bob and bang recklessly. Yet, they are able to avoid overt hamminess and cliches, opting for controlled, muscular urgency and wild tongue rides. “I Cut Off My Arms” has a slight Mexi-beat, a cantina dance almost embroiled by festooning rock urges (”I used to hold you all night long,” he croons with larynx shredding drama). “Extinguisher” finally settles the whole affair down a bit, waxing languid about someone “turning the light on.” It’s feathery fare for a few minutes, about being piss drunk and passed out in the back of the car, but eventually it morphs into big bombastic rock too.

“Whorse” wrestles with acid-blues — darkly shadowed metalhead dreams with a crocodile underbelly — that might echo the sludgy slow-jams of Queens of the Stone Age: think mystique and monster riffage. Following up, the molten black gospel “Suicide Man” bridges the sleepy hollow world of Mississippi with the urban voodoo of downtown Nowhere, USA. Beware his hi-pitched shrieks, which challenge even the upper reaches of Jack White’s caterwauls. Near the end, “Summer’s War” comes on slow and steady, in wicked waves of gutter metal-blues too, with a siren voice that could fill up a bottomless lake. The dizzying guitar weaving and interplay of “Rainbow Blood” provide spacey texture to the voice that clings both to soft etudes in one moment and roaring cosmic largesse the next. Between the roar and the subdued slices falls the swinging, kinky drum work. Hard to peg, hard to shrug off, JACK prove that there is still lots to haunt and hatch in rock’n’roll’s bastardized bowels.
- leftofthedialmag.com

"Stranded in Stereo review of Deletist"

Jaggedly Assaulting Cannibalistic Killers, or possibly Jumping Anatomical Caribbean Kinfolk, or even Jiving Alligators Carrying Keyboards…whatever J.A.C.K. means they just want to let you know “they stand for something.” This four piece of raucous and raging musicians, with a mystery meaning behind their acronym, are releasing their first full-length album, Deletist, from Yabyum Records on June 16. Subtle melodic intros complimented by crashing climactic finishes, and powerful vocals; the true meaning behind the ambiguous J.A.C.K. is up for you to decide.

Tracks like "Whorse" and lead off jam "Dracula" are big and bombastic, while "Suicide Man," with its footstomp and hand claps and gang vocals at the beginning, totally reminds me of that Portugal. The Man band everyone here at the office digs. If you're in the NYC area, the band have a pair of dates coming up and should go see them. Oh, and our own Jose Fritz, who turned me on to this album, is a rather big fan of the band. Check out his review over on the main site if you haven't already. - http://strandedinstereo.blogspot.com

"DonnyBrook Writing Academy review of Deletist"

Most Likely To: lead to organized rebellion.

J.A.C.K. is nothing new. That is to say, J.A.C.K. is nothing new to my ears. The overall girth of Deletist is nothing that I haven’t already heard, nothing that I haven’t already seen. I say none of this, however, in anything even closely resembling a negative fashion.

See, Deletist is a record that I’ve been listening to in some form or another since early 2004 when I first encountered the band in a sweat-hot Brooklyn basement. Since that time, the band has added members, scrapped recordings, wrangled labels and gone through an overall gauntlet that would wrench most groups apart at the hinges. In the case of J.A.C.K., however, the literal years spent crafting the offerings presented on Deletist have refined their initial storm and fury into the military sabre-point of some straggled man-at-arms.

Deletist follows through on all of the potential beauty that a band like J.A.C.K. is capable of. Rarely has such a stylistically straight-shooting sound been capitalized on in such a compelling way. J.A.C.K.’s vision of rock ‘n’ roll is a simple one, reminiscent in superficial ways of The Sonics or the glory days of some late ’70s band of American ubermensch. Bands like The Black Keys and their peers try in vain to grasp what J.A.C.K. do so effortlessly, but the operative difference, the thing that sets Deletist into a category of it’s own, is a sense of majesty. Songs like “Bug” don’t just fly, they soar like cloak-winged, sexual avengers hell bent on teaching the world how to scream from the diaphragm. The individual performances are brilliant–Scott Holland’s voice is a screeching trump card whose only real sonic competition comes in the form of J.P. Gilbert’s guitar work. But the real strength that comes from these performances is how carefully they decorate a much more powerful base. Every track on Deletist is a triumph of the goddamned will; something colossal looms at the heart of every chugged chord and resonates in each assertive crash from Tim Monaghan.

My fear in hearing this record after waiting for it for so long, knowing so well the source material that would eventually come to comprise most of what I was to hear, was that something would be lost. Power is many times gained only in the freshly-formed present, after all. No, I recoil too soon–the wait has proven the strength behind just what it is that J.A.C.K. has been trying to do to be made of sterner stuff than any of us are used to nowadays. And to top it all off, the band knew exactly how to decorate their golem in just the right way.

Brooklyn’s favorite war machine finally got the fresh coat of paint it needed and now, after what seems like an eternity, we’re all seriously fucked. -by Dr. Lazarus Helm - The Donnybrook Writing Academy: godonnybrook.com

"Jezebelmusic.com feature on J.a.c.k."

March Feature 2008
Feature Article by Ben Krieger

For the NYC rock fan who frequents local venues, forever in search of the perfect band, the world can be full of disappointments: lead guitarists that fall short of spectacular, drummers who can't find the pocket, singers who fall flat. When everything does come together, the result is true, cathartic magic. Jezebel Music has been proud to present some of NYC's best rock bands as previous features. To a select group of bands that includes Proton Proton and Beat the Devil we can now add J.A.C.K.

The lineup consists of Scott Holland (vocals/guitar), JP Gilbert (guitar), Christopher Tordini (bass) and Tim Monaghan (drums). The lion's share of the band's sound is derived from pile-driving 70's metal acts like Deep Purple and Black Sabbath; it's their refusal to rely on shortcut genre clichés that keeps their songs fresh and familiar at the same time. Like many new millennium bands, the members of J.A.C.K. are rock scholars with love for a wide variety of musical genres. Holland can do a mean Sam Cooke impression while the other three members -- all graduates from the New School -- get a bit bug-eyed discussing their favorite late-period Coltrane records. When Holland croons, "somebody turn the light on" during "Extinguisher", the band is acknowledging a fondness for Motown ballads. A minute later, Television guitars propel a buildup that eventually explodes into a metal version of the original refrain. “I Cut My Arms Off” also features Verlaine/Lloyd guitar interplay before taking on an intensity that the Strokes have never achieved. Monaghan embraces the responsibility of a band being only as good as their drummer and delivers a hard-hitting performance. He attacks every part of his drum kit with confident zeal. While Holland's guitar playing is secondary next to his lead vocal abilities (more on that later), his chops are knowledgeable and painstakingly rehearsed. He provides a solid foundation from which Gilbert's fretwork can shine. A versatile player who keeps his cards close to his chest, Gilbert is able to release a ferocious variety of blues licks and Sonic Youth-inspired guitar wails when the moment is right. Tordini is the newest member to the group and opts for minimalist restraint, securely anchoring the bottom end during Holland and Gilbert's soaring excursions.

The make-it-or-break-it factor for most rock bands is, of course, the singer. In Holland, J.A.C.K. has one of the most gifted vocalists a group could ask for. The rock veteran paid his dues working as a karaoke DJ, often performing himself and developing the ability to masterfully mimic a variety of singers. In the course of a single song, he can conjure up the pristine wail of Jeff Buckley, the howl of Ian Gillan, the rasp of Bon Scott, and some downright scary vocal overtones that would make any Mongolian throat singer proud. Hearing this voice caught on tape is only half the story; the discerning audience member will notice that during live performances, Holland is able to bring forth this tonal variety without straining his pipes beyond their capabilities. He is able to capture the sound of overdriven vocal chords without actually losing control, relying on the stage amplification to lift help cut through the band's cacophony. Eyes closed, a listener might imagine Bruce Dickinson on steroids, foot on the monitor, leaning way back in a gratuitous rock god pose. Open-eyed reality reveals a calm, confident singer/guitarist generating some of the most impressive vocal arsenals working today. Lyrically, Holland shapes his words around the feel of each song. When he's shouting that "the world is full of assholes and I'm one of them, playing my guitar," the band is raging with matching intensity.

J.A.C.K.'s fanbase has been growing rapidly in the New Year following a slew of successful shows (the members cheerfully recall the mosh pit that has materialized as the crowds have grown larger). The band formed in 2005 and snagged a record deal with Ace Fu Records early on. The subsequent folding of Ace Fu's label activities doesn't seem to have slowed them down at all. With two EPs under their belt, the band has recorded the full-length Deletist, which they are planning to label shop or release independently in 2008. Their current tours have taken them as far as SXSW and they would like to travel further west with their new material. They admit that it would be nice to have support behind this endeavor or, as Holland puts it, to have their "bellies rubbed." Monaghan has a quick response to that comment: "Fuck that, I'll rub their bellies," he laughs. Joking aside, it is clear that this is an earnest rock band that takes pride in their musical ability, refusing to foster an image that would cater to shallow industry scouts. They have made friends with similar bands throughout the city (of the many peer names they bring up, Jezebel readers may recognize the no-frills Abigail Warchild, who were featured in November 2007). When all is said and done, J.A.C.K. is able to accomplish what few bands can in an age of omnipotent, four-star ratings: surpass their own hype.
- Jezebelmusic.com


1. Jack - EP
2. J.A.C.K. and Jucifer split 7"
(Obliterator b/w Birds of a Feather)
3. J.A.C.K. - Deletist (full length)

Streaming songs on myspace.com/jacknyc, myspace.com/yabyumrecords, jackbandnyc.com



Tim and JP met in music school, and found Scott who had had a band called jack, but needed new members. The 3 hit it off, soon started playing basement parties, mostly in the communal Rad Pad and gained a reputation as 'the' band to have at your parties. Briefly being signed to Ace Fu Records, Chris was added on bass, and the name changed to J.A.C.K. Before the record could be released Ace Fu closed shop, where yabyum Records picked up the reigns to release a split 7" w/ Jucifer (Relapse) and the long awaited full length, Deletist.