Brother JT

Tornado Juice

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"Tornado Juice" is the playful name John Terlesky (aka Brother JT) has given to LSD, an acknowledged staple of his creative process. Since Terlesky has opted to name an album after his favored psychedelic compound, one might expect that 2018's Tornado Juice would be an especially trippy effort from a man whose catalog is hip deep in acidic sounds. But as it happens, Tornado Juice is one of Brother JT's more decisively rockin' efforts. Most of Terlesky's efforts of the 2000s and beyond were recorded in his home studio, but Tornado Juice was cut at Magic Door Studio in Montclair, New Jersey, with the mastermind joined by guitarist Mike Logan, bassist Ron Kuhn, and drummer Jamie Kerr. With a good live room and a solid band at his disposal, Brother JT sounds revved up and ready to go, and here he sounds like the John Terlesky who fronted the Original Sins back in the '80s. Tornado Juice is less furious than the Original Sins' best work, but these songs are psychedelia with muscle, boasting pop hooks but also showing the gritty influence of classic garage rock. The lyrics have the lysergic bent you'd expect from Brother JT, but his cultural references run the gamut from kettle chips to Michelangelo Antonioni, and overall Terlesky sounds upbeat, engaged, and rollicking on these sessions. Tornado Juice isn't without its flaws, especially in the melodies, which tend to get a bit samey by the end of the set. But there's still plenty of solid rock & roll fun to be had here, and on Tornado Juice, Terlesky merges his garage and psych influences with great success, and this is one of Brother JT's most purely enjoyable releases.

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