The Jook

Different Class

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Owing to the rarity of their '70s releases, Jook have remained largely unheard even by fans of glam and power pop. This exemplary CD compilation, Different Class, wholly fixes that problem; as it includes both sides of all five of their singles from 1972 through 1974; the four tracks from the 1978 EP of some of their final recordings; "Moving in the Right Direction," used as a 1976 B-side for a solo single by Jook member Trevor White; five previously unreleased cuts; and two solo demos by another Jook member, Ian Kimmet. Given the band's strong connections to '60s mod group John's Children (who often played in a sub-Who style), Jook, unsurprisingly, often sound somewhat like the Who, albeit with a considerably lighter glam-pop feel. Certainly the guitar work is very Who-like, not only in the power pop chording, but also in some scraping, free-form Pete Townshend-esque solos (check out "Alright with Me" for some of that). It could be reasonably argued that Jook wrote better, and certainly wrote more mature and less kitschy songs than far more successful glam-aligned bands like Sweet. So why weren't they as successful as bands like Sweet? Fair or not, it's because Jook weren't as gifted at crafting the kind of pop hooks that, whether you like them or not, stick in your memory. Those with more patience than the average teenyboppers who bought glam singles in the '70s may like Jook's approach, however, and their story is certainly given full justice by the deeply researched liner notes.

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