The End Records (label)
19 November 2012 (released)
08 November 2012
My Jerusalem’s second album is all brooding vocals and dark chiming guitars and founder and singer Jeff Klein says the band have been through difficult times in recent years, meaning this is a dark record. Difficult times often provide creative inspiration, so thank goodness they have been to hell and back as Klein calls it, because much of Preachers is both anthemic and epic.
The band also features multi-instrumentalist Michael St. Clair, drummer Grant Van Amburgh, and bassist Geena Spigarelli and they decided to go analogue for the recording, which is perhaps why there is a richer texture to the sound. They also had the opportunity to road-test much of the material before recording and that has given the album a cohesive feel.
Preachers is describe as equal parts sweet, morbid and strange, but it is perhaps those strange and morbid moments that work best. The opening pounding piano of the title track is followed by the glorious mean and moody Shatter Together. Similar in style is the impressive Devoe, with its Jarvis Cocker style vocals while Mono sounds like Athlete could have done if they had not strayed too close to the pop sun.
Klein describes the sound as Post-Modern Southern Gothic Soul, which is not a bad summary of the textures and feel. The band are better when they sound a bit annoyed or upset, with the likes of the jaunty horn filled This Time just staying the right side of country but Born In The Belly’s uptempo rhythms clash uncomfortably with the angst ridden vocals. The closing six minutes of I Left My Conscience In You might please fans but it is a touch indulgent.
Overall Preachers is an interesting journey through what are described as Raymond Carver-esque stories, backed by the wonderful baritone of Klein and some excellent guitars and drums.