Noble Ground Records [Release date 27.03.20]
Brighton-based duo Noble Jacks (Will Page on fiddle, piano and Matty Deveson on guitar/bass) originally released their second album ‘Stay Awake’ in March 2019, gaining a Top 10 spot in the UK Americana album charts in the process. They had a sold out launch party at Brighton’s Concorde 2 venue, followed by a host of headline UK dates across 2019 and earlier this year supported the Dead South, another band currently enjoying a surge in popularity.
This is a deluxe re-issue of that album, with the album’s original ten songs re-recorded and four new ones added. So even if you bought the album originally you would still be wise to invest in this deluxe one.
They ply their trade in upbeat folk meets Americana tunes, often reminding me of the Levellers at times, particularly on ‘Rely On Love’ or ‘This Rose’. On ‘New Beginning’ they hone in on jangly pop, a touch of Mumford & Sons on here. Then just when you think you have a handle on their sound, they introduce a stomping blues rocker ‘What Did You Say’. The slide guitar on here is sublime.
The album running order actually packs some of the better songs at the end, including the single ‘Enjoy The Ride’, a proper sing-a-long anthem. Then we have the country twang on ‘Road Of Death’ and ‘Dreams Carry Me On’. The latter is a whirling dervish of folk fiddle and rhythmic drumbeats, a real tour de force to finish the album on. Not sure who played the drums on here, however they did a sterling job and add greatly to the fiddle as the main lead instrument.
The Noble Jacks have plenty of gusto about their music, an uplifting tonic perfect for these strange times. ***1/2
Review by Jason Ritchie
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