December 14th 2007
The Houma Courier
Houma, LA newspaper
Locke's metal-influenced tracks are the better ones
review by: Katie Kingdon

Jak Locke has recently released a fourth CD, "Rain Cabinet", a follow-up to his 2005 CD "Battery Acid."

Jak Locke plays every instrument on his recordings, but is backed by other band members during live shows. This is not an uncommon practice for musicians. Trent Reznor has done the same with Nine Inch Nails albums, and so has Billy Corgan and Jimmy Chamberlain with the latest Smashing Pumpkins album.

Jak Locke is from the West Bank and has produced albums for other bands including The Plebians' "Revolution Under The Influence", Dinosaur Pilot's "Pants On Fire" and some demo tracks for The Judas Kiss.

Locke's own music sounds like a mix of rock, alternative, jazz and thrash metal among other things. Once as a passing joke he coined the phrase "death blues" to describe it.

Locke's vocals are very strong, and he has a good range. His voice has been compared to Dax Riggs'.

The third CD "Battery Acid" sounds a lot like a Beck album to me. In fact, Locke has said he is one of his biggest early influences. Most songs are alternative rock with some hip-hop and electric jazz influence.

In Locke's latest, all of the songs are connected by trippy musical interludes. There are no gaps between tracks. This gives the album the same effect as Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon," but with a more jazzed-up ambience.

Much of the new album is made up of slow songs. They are very well-produced, mellow, ambient; sound cool; nothing wrong with them. But I tend to like the harder, more metal-influenced songs on the album the best.

My favorite song on the album is "Hangover," which features some very awesome fast guitar riffs. Other favorites on the CD are "Dark Little Cloud" and "Copperhead".

"Marrubium Vulgare" and "Eleven Cuts" are the most metal songs I've ever heard by Jak Locke. They sound like such southern thrash metal bands as Soilent Green, Acid Bath or even Necrid.

"Isn't It Just Like September" is influenced by Fiona Apple and features a jazz piano and rhythm and bass tracks that remind me of be-bop and swing styles of jazz.

"Septic Tank" uses cool vocal distortion effects, a fall back to the sound of "Battery Acid". The sound of this one vaguely reminds me of that of another local band, Blackfire Revelation.

Josh St. Amant backs Jak Locke on guitar and bass during live shows along with Mike Guillot on bass and guitar and Derek Gordon on drums.

Locke's next show will be at 10 p.m. Dec. 14 at The Bar in Metairie.

unarchived online