Cassette Jam – Album Review
Written by Michael
August 26, 2010 10:34 am
In recent years music genre’s have started to amalgamate and merge and diversify in extraordinary ways. An early example would be the collaboration between Linkin Park and Jay-Z, and more recent examples would be acts such as Celldweller and even Pendulum. Now we have Cassette Jam, a 2 piece/3 piece live group who are looking to challenge the common perception on dance music with their more “band feel”, the beat sounding like that of a drum kit, the edgy pop vocals and the 80’s vibe synths, squeals and pops. Their self-titled debut album is certainly different from the usual, and the influences are clear and wide ranging. There’s definitely hints of Kraftwerk here, but also the almost Calvin Harris style vocals layered on top of the tracks, and the occasional distortion guitar hinting at a heavier Celldweller sound, especially in the brilliant Never Going Home where the vocals almost sound identical to Klayton. “We’re coming for your soul” – well it certainly feels like it!
There’s also great use of samples and little vocal titbits, dropping us into tracks where Cassette Jam cut in with the edgy titanic vibes. This is not music for the faint hearted, and the album definitely lacks the sophistication of Hybrids Disappear Here – though it certainly manages to outclass recent Calvin Harris efforts. Walk in the Dark is an odd little track, at just over two minutes long it’s almost as if they had a great idea but couldn’t quite reach it. It can’t really claim to be an indent like Getting Friendly, either, because it doesn’t really introduce us to anything. Don’t Lose Control is probably our highlight track of the album, it manages to successfully merge everything Cassette Jam were hoping to achieve into one funky, electrifying dance-rock that should easily gain the appreciation of music fans across genre.
Whilst this is not the most accomplished album, for a debut it is a remarkable effort that produces many highlights and enjoyable music which fulfils it’s objectives. These are guys who clearly know what they want to achieve, and look set to do it. We hope that Cassette Jam don’t run out of ideas and the next release will be another step up for the Leeds boys – we’ve heard they’re pretty snazzy on the decks too.
In short: A spirited attempt to create a cross-genre sound that takes the best parts of many wide ranging influences, and smashes them together with grit, determination, and awesome delivery. Cassette Jams debut album is a remarkable debut and the sure sign of great things to come.