Saturday, April 10, 2010

Jetset Motel — Jetset Motel
I'd seen the name Jetset Motel in local concert listings for a while, but didn't know anything about the band or its music until being sent an online advance copy of its self-titled debut that will go on sale on April 20.
The 10-track album is a happy discovery, full of well-written and played rootsy guitar rock played by four Newfoundlanders now living in Toronto and influenced by the likes of Gram Parsons, Neil Young and Wilco. The record was mixed by Laurence Currie, whose studio resume also includes the names Holy Fuck, Wintersleep, The Cliks and In Flight Safety.
Lead singer David Picco and Jimmy Rose's guitars intertwine seemingly effortlessly, while bassist Sheldon Kelly and drummer Dennis Keough are no slouches either.
Backing harmonies add a pop dimension to the big guitar sound found in opener "I Guess You Know By Now," while there's a little more jangle in "Way It's Been."
You can hear some steel guitar in the rollicking country rocker "Late In The Early Morning," tasteful organ in the mid-tempo "Pass By Slow," and Picco cuts loose on the harmonica in "Goin' Down The Road."
The six-and-a-half-minute closing track, "You Are Only Listening (To Your Heart Start Up Again)," revolves around acoustic guitar for the first half before feedback and squealing electric guitar comes in Velvet Underground-style to take things home.
Jetset Motel offered a lot more than I was expecting. I'll give it an 8/10.
Jetset Motel will be launched with an April 22 performance at Toronto's Dakota Tavern, while more Ontario shows are scheduled for May and June. You can also hear the band's music in the CBC television series, Republic Of Doyle.