Monday 21 January 2013

#MixtapeMonday - Jacob Banks: The Monologue EP

Lyrics: 4.7/5.0 - Production: 4.6/5.0 - Overall Score: 4.6/5.0

Review by MrReesh - Get at me on Twitter - @MrReesh

Pay attention now: this guy is Jacob Banks:


I just really want you to get this right, because you should really care who Jacob Banks is – he’s a phenomenal singer capable of compressing real emotion into 3-5 minute, incredibly well written tracks that only Mr Banks, with that aforementioned phenomenal voice, could sing. 

Jacob Black - this is not Jacob Banks
So you’re probably thinking "‘Monologue EP’? So what, is this loony just talking to himself all the bloody THING" Well technically as no-one replies, yes, but it's awesomeThe Monologue EP is an incredibly personal journey that follows Jacob through his life in the form of well crafted songs, covering topics such as heartbreak, homesickness, hope, and other emotions that start with H. It ends up being a great journey to be invited on with lasting effect, despite some minor issues here and there.

Now if you download this for absolutely any reason, do it because of his voice. Whoa! Literally sometimes when you hear it you stop and think "what the hell did I just hear bro???” (in a good way) He's got that classic Motown soul, “my baby no love me but that’s okay” vibe going on but with a chillingly modern twist, which makes it sound astounding rather than simply good and from the first song that satin vocal will keep you listening, even if the song itself won't.

King Kong after Christmas - still not Jacob Banks
However chances are that the song will keep you going anyway as songwriting is immense - and not just like fat person immense, but King Kong after Christmas dinner immense. In each song he manages to effectively create a feeling which accurately houses the content of the song, sometimes effortlessly as in the simplistic heart-warming tale of bittersweet ambition in Homecoming. I especially loved the dramatic feeling of desperation in Worthy, which kicks off the EP in the same manner an explosion kicks off an avalanche. The melancholy love letter to an old lover Dear Simone is another great track with emotional songwriting - and he swears! Ah it's great! When he says it it's spicy (yes, spicy) and invokes a "whooo, say it again" reaction similar to that of Shenzi hearing Mufasa in the Lion King. And don't even get me started on Something Beautiful or Hostage! Choosing my top three this week was incredibly difficult, especially as the more that you listen to the EP the more it grows on you, the more hear things you never heard before, and the more you feel that the Monologue EP is one of the best true soul EPs out there right now.

Carlton Banks - not to be confused with Jacob Banks
However despite this some things can come out a bit off, especially in terms of delivery. I personally didn't like Kids on The Corner that much as it felt a little dull, although I got a decent head shake from those guitar riffs that keep popping up. YOLO was another one that didn't sit well with me, as despite having that lively and dramatic feel with one of the best instrumentals on the EP, I felt like it missed the mark in the level of excitement it tried to create. It actually ends up being probably the most unique track, though its quality is not to the standard of others songs on the EP.

But what I think I love the most about this EP is that each song feels as though it has a purpose, a characteristic rare in much of modern music in my humble, yet incredibly important opinion. Banks is trying to give us a piece of himself here, an insight to the life and thoughts of a soon to be world conquering artist, and he does it so, so well. Sure there may be some hiccups but it's still a great listen, which legitimately becomes better every time you hear it, discover hidden meanings, or find something that you yourself can connect with. So enough reading, download this rastaclart EP here right now.

Jacob Banks on Twitter: @MrJacobBanks

My Top 3:
1) Something Beautiful
2) Worthy or Hostage
3) Dear Simone

Photo Credits:
King Kong original picture "King Kong" by WestSFValley
Jacob Black photo "the_twilight_saga_new_moon" by perry_marco

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