Ja Ja (Yes Yes) is the full-length follow-up to 1997's Mutabor. This album contains seven tracks from the 2000 EP Das Eine so, as expected, Ja Ja retains much of the same mood and style of that sampler. After exploring quirky and neurotic alternative folk-rock on their debut, Mutabor have settled into a more mainstream approach to modern rock, incorporating pseudo-ska and reggae beats into their music. This is a deliberate effort to curb the impetuousness displayed so prominently earlier in their career. Considering that Mutabor now record for their own Mankana label, one has to assume they are where they want to be stylistically and that their Virgin release was, perhaps, a slight aberration. Still, Ja Ja has its moments of sheer aggressiveness and, certainly, individualism. "Lisa" evokes a discernible early-'80s Madness influence and "Kelch" even teases listeners with a brief music box intro of "Swan Lake" (which Madness re-created on One Step Beyond...), but for the most part their brand of ska lies more firmly rooted in the '90s ska revival. They don't, however, always fall into any strict categorization, as many of their songs borrow from a number of sources. Mutabor excel in combining punk, pop, and ska into their unique sound.
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AllMusic Review by Dave Sleger