The Jazz Age

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Yet another in a long line of British indie bands equally inspired by symbolist poetry, Scott Walker, and the early albums of Roxy Music (see also Suede, the Auteurs, Divine Comedy and half of the Cherry Red Records artist roster between 1981 and 1986), singer/songwriter Anthony Reynolds and his seven-piece band Jack have the moves down cold. Reynolds' pretentious lyrics airily name-drop cool influences ranging from Vladimir Nabokov and Pablo Picasso to Nico, but add little else of interest. This is, in fact, quite common in this style of music, and therefore not a particular handicap. On the upside, the band, led by multi-instrumentalist and arranger Matthew Scott, is quite good. Scott's melodies are varied and graceful enough to make songs like the delicate, genuinely pretty "Lolita Elite" and the atypically driving, almost rocking, "Love and Death in the Afternoon" work. Ignore Reynolds' silly lyrics (his voice, encouragingly, isn't half bad) and The Jazz Age is an enjoyable listen akin to mid-'80s Eyeless In Gaza.

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