ZoneDine Alone Records
By AJ Phink
Since their formation fifteen years ago, whilst still in high school in Nashville, Tennessee, JEFF The Brotherhood have been consistently dishing out their own brand of psychedelic fuzzed up power pop ever since. This is JEFF The Brotherhood‘s eleventh studio album, Zone follows hot on the heels of their two 2015 album releases, Wasted On The Dream, and Global Chakra Rhythms.
Zone opens with the title track, which contains a sinister fuzzed up funeral beat accompanied by dark swirling keyboards, this switches to the opening pounding riff of Energy, that swiftly eases back into a lonesome guitar riff before mutating into a sonic blast of psychedelia. Punishment is a short garage influenced number, which begins as a simple riff before a mass of effects are stamped into action, giving the number a much fuzzier heavier tone. My personal favourite on Zone is Juice, apart from it’s wonderful bouncy riff it contains the lyric ‘I’m getting busted in a space shuttle’ which is probably the best metaphor for Zone that I can think of, it feels like the Ramones under the influence of mind expansion. The tracks that follow are equally upbeat, Roachin’ sounds like Hole should have sounded and Idiot is a slice of pure exhuberant fuzzy power pop. After this trio of infectious fuzzy songs the album abruptly switches to the downbeat Ox, this is an album that constantly changes style and tempo but all the while maintaining a unique character and dark fuzziness. The final two tracks, You and Portugal, are heavy epic numbers that bring the album to a gloriously noisy end.
Zone can be stratospheric one moment and downbeat, heartfelt, hedonistic and suspiciously hazy the next. Shades of substance use and the character of the darker end of pyschedelia and garage are prevalent alongside a raw punk influence, this collision of influences has made this is a truly individual band and, more importantly, one that has made a truly great album. I’m ashamed to admit that I haven’t encountered Jeff The Brotherhood prior to this album, but that is something I’m going to rectify. Whilst there are another fourteen albums to investigate I think that Zone would be the perfect starting point to acquaint yourself with this band. JEFF The Brotherhood have produced a superb and strange amalgamation of garage fuzz, psychedelic strangeness, indie cool and punk attitude, in short it is an excellent and utterly unique album that I think you need to own.
Zone is due for release on September 30th via Dine Alone Records and you can pre order the album here