A cheeky blend of ska, funk, hip hop and electronica filled my Sunday night at the Rescue Rooms at the weekend. Just Jack was just the ticket to experience a menagerie of musical styles in a singular performance.
The crowd was warmed up using the talents of Radar. A band that offered ska-esque tracks. The lead singer, Callum Johnston, provided enough energy to get people moving. With rather funky sounds but pretty non-descript tunes we were ready for the arrival of Just Jack on stage. Half an hour later the cheeky chappy arrived.
Finally an MC that smiles and looks unbelievably happy! Jack Allsopp, the lead singer/MC of Just Jack bounced on stage to provide a large range of rather cool tunes. With the backing of his electronic orchestra, drummer, guitarists and backing singer, Jack provided the crowd with tunes from his latest album and live show exclusives, he seemed to leave a very happy bunch of punters.
Expecting a show that resembled a Streets gig, with a Mike Skinner style lead, I was pleasantly surprised with the reality of what Just Jack had to offer. Every track seemed to reflect the possible influences of the band. The Streets not necessarily being one of them. Tracks such as No Time and I Talk Too Much from the recent album Overtones, had shades of Groove Armada and Jamiroquai. Heavy guitar and drum jazz-funk with an MC thrown in. However, with the electronic sounds added to other songs such as Disco Friends and Snowflake, from their 2002 album, shades of Massive Attack could be heard.
The happy lyrics in the majority of songs were matched by the huge grin on the face of Jack Allsopp as he bounced around on the stage for the majority of the set as if all of his Christmases had come at once. This enthusiasm could do nothing but make me grin and probably enjoy the set even more. His only sombre moment was during Hold On, possible reflections about a lady. It was interesting hearing a fundamentally acoustic tune with a little bit of electronica enhancing the sound rather than engulfing it. The irony of the title of their exclusive live track, Goth In A Disco, was matched by brilliant lyrics.
Just Jack is the type of band that I would expect to headline at The Big Chill. The happy tunes from his album are ones that I would look forward to hearing whilst dancing away in the glorious sunshine in the middle of a field. I am sure that his forthcoming second single, Glory Days, is going to be a feel good tune that is going to be around till the summer. It is likely to turn into another crowd pleaser like their encore tune Stars In Their Eyes.
Just Jack played at the Rescue Rooms on the 11th February 2007.
Click here for a full gallery from the night
All photos courtesy of Jon Rouston (c)
Just Jack website