Reviews:: Jason Dove We Should Be Together

Let's be honest. If you want to get your record reviewed by me, simply let me know that J Robbins was involved. It will work every time, ask Jason Dove.

Dove is a Baltimore musician who somehow manages to mix 60's pop, dreamy atmospheres and grungy textures seamlessly. His debut record - We Should Be Together - was produced and recorded J Robbins, but he doesn't fit the mold of the bands you'd normally associate with the Desoto records founder.

The record opens with the ukulele driven title track, a quirky/cute ditty that really caught me off guard. The naive love obsession reminds me of Daniel Johnston - which is quite fitting as the two recorded songs together, but it wasn't what I was expecting to hear. As the rougher, slow burning (and somewhat expected) chords of So You Know leak out of the speakers, I foolishly assumed the grungy pace and sounds would be a familiar player on the record.

The record actually gravitates more towards 60's pop, as evidenced by the twee track Slumber Party, but he adds enough edge to even the most sensitive songs to create his own sound. They're Watching You, is a nice slice of 90's college rock and it flows nicely into piano tinker of Every Aspect Of Entertainment (Part 1).

Dove addresses the shortcomings of modern entertainment and how it takes away from our own creativity. It's an interesting position for an entertainer to take, but makes for an interesting track - especially with the nice transition from the heavy, hectic guitar chords into the slow, harmonized piano work.

Dove's voice and sound fluctuates so often over this debut release that it's hard to describe accurately. I think he's more happy writing songs and experimenting with instrumentation. More often than not, his arrangements work well like on Come Back to Me & Wishing It Was Over where the band combines 60's harmonies with some dirtier guitar.

The reflective, folky Old Men breaks up the record nicely and cleanses your palette for Let's Not Think and Stoned on Beer. Let's Not Think toes the line between a summery pop song and a slacker rock anthem, and Stoned On Beer is the type of song you'd expect from the title.

I think my favorite track on the record is the rootsy When Autumn Comes Around. Dove's vocals mix well with the chugging guitar, but the sound really shimmers when the acoustic notes and harmonies show up. The Magic Whip add so many subtle sounds, but every note makes perfect sense and flows nicely.

I'd be shocked if Jason Dove and the Magic Whip aren't snatched by a label soon, so if you want to say you liked him before he got big, here's your chance.
MP3:: When Autumn Comes Around
MP3:: Slumber Party

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