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Jonesy - No Alternative CD (album) cover

NO ALTERNATIVE

Jonesy

 

Heavy Prog

3.28 | 29 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Jonesy was never meant to play any role of significance in the history of prog. Just like many bands of whatever genre they played, sometimes got the chance to record and perform live but in the end it all fell through. In many cases it is understandable, in others a shame. Why is that, you wonder? Simply because, must be my reply, the music really is deserving of more attention. Jonesy is one of those bands whom Fate simply walked past, though they really ought to have become something of a household name in the world of prog. Not in Genesis or King Crimson kind of way but maybe in the same league as Gentle Giant or Nektar.

This, the first, of the bands three (if you do not count the fourth album made up by demos and rehearsals due to theft and lack of money) is really the crudest of them all but shows their potential. The recordings are not crystal clear and are not perfect but then again, what matters is the overall feeling and quality of the music itself. Me, not being an audiophile, thinks that that proof of the pudding is in the tasting, not the looks, and jonesy tastes delicious.

I think that jonesy may be best known for their extensive use of the mellotron. Just like Spring (and many of their contemporaries) the mellotron was used to great effect. The crude, distorted sound of this first album is to me heavenly. The fact that the mellotron sounds distorted at times makes it even more appealing. The interplay between the mellotron and fuzzed out and sometimes screaming guitar is excellent and bridges the early progressive rock with the early type of heavy metal, making it heavy and complex.

It is true that echoes of King Crimson are quite in abundance, especially on the epic and emotive "Heaven", one of the highlights of the album. The use of mellotron evokes KC aswell. There are other sources of inspiration on here aswell, or similarities to other groups. I mentioned Spring but I could add Tonton Mocoute, Skin Alley, Gentle Giant and others. Whether it is by chance or by intention these similarities occur I do not know but being from the same country and operating in the same era i guess influences and ideas changed hands quite often. This is not to say that Jonesy lack in personality. They do possess one of their own and that personality is truly enthralling. The sound of this album is dated and very much of it's time but that is not something to dread. This is part of progressive history and as such it is magnificent.

While the albums is very much on the hard rock side of things, there are mellow exceptions such as "Heaven" and "Pollution". These are epic, long tracks with beautiful mellotron and very emotive soundscapes. The track "Ricochet", also released as a single, is a tremendous track. Really rough, crude and blessed with wah-wah guitar. Superb.

I think this is a great album from the pioneering days of prog and konesy needs to be heard and recognized. A great but forgotten/ overlooked gem. Four solid stars from me.

GruvanDahlman | 4/5 |

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