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JONESY

Heavy Prog • United Kingdom


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Jonesy biography
JONESY were an early 70's band in the style of KING CRIMSON but with the unusual element of electric trumpet from Alan Bown. Other band members were John Evan-Jones - guitar & backing vocals, Jamie Kaleth - lead vocals & keyboards (including some excellent Mellotron), Gypsy Jones - lead vocals, bass guitar & recorders and Plug Thomas - percussion and backing vocals.

They recorded three albums on the Dawn Label "No Alternative", "Keeping Up" and "Growing". All are strong with the aforementioned KING CRIMSON influences. All can be approached with a degree of assurity but "Keeping Up" is probably the strongest of the three. All were reissued on CD by Korean label S-Wan.

Strongly recommended..!

: : : Dave Preston, ENGLAND : : :

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Masquerade: Dawn Years AnthologyMasquerade: Dawn Years Anthology
Import · Remastered
Esoteric 2007
Audio CD$12.91
$12.79 (used)
Sudden Prayers Make God JumpSudden Prayers Make God Jump
Import
2003
Audio CD$9.97
$18.88 (used)
GrowingGrowing
Import · Limited Edition · Remastered
Jvc Japan 2002
Audio CD$123.52
$37.28 (used)
No AlternativeNo Alternative
Import
2004
Audio CD$20.15
$15.95 (used)
Keeping UpKeeping Up
Import
Japanese Indies 2006
Audio CD$510.12
$42.22 (used)
Richochet: Pioneering in 1972-73Richochet: Pioneering in 1972-73
Import
El Records 2007
Audio CD$10.43
$8.39 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
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8 days
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JONESY discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

JONESY top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.28 | 29 ratings
No Alternative
1972
3.38 | 26 ratings
Growing
1973
3.58 | 32 ratings
Keeping Up
1973
2.48 | 10 ratings
Sudden Prayers Make God Jump
2002
2.75 | 7 ratings
Dark Matter
2011

JONESY Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

JONESY Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

JONESY Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.86 | 9 ratings
Masquerade - The Dawn Years Anthology
2007

JONESY Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

JONESY Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Growing by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.38 | 26 ratings

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Growing
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The third and final installment of Jonesy is their (last to be) album Growing. Though released in the same year as Keeping up it differs rather alot. Keeping up is clearly the stronger one, in my opinion, but this is a really good album aswell.

I love british prog and Jonesy was one of those numerous bands playing high quality, visionary and exciting music. Unfortunately they fell through for one or several reasons. The point, however, is that they made three wonderful yet very diverse albums. The first one being really a hard rock/prog affair, before they ventured into more symphonic territory on Keeping up (though with a very jazzy edge) and heading straight into jazz-rock on Growing.

Starting off with "Can you get that together", a rather harsh and energetic piece of jazz-rock. Slightly askew and bordering on free-form, just enough to keep it on track, it is an interesting track which I enjoy all the way through. It is a great way to start off an album. Energy, stamina and power. The two coming tracks are a bit on the mellow side. "Know who your friends are" is probably my favorite track on the album. It boasts a great first section, heading into a spacious and jazzy middle part before heading straight back into the sound which opened up the song. "Hard road" is a jazz-rock piece with distorted trumpet and energetic, almost funky feel to it. The track "Jonesy" is an instrumental affair which is a fitting testament to one of the great forgotten bands of the 70's. It leaves them hanging on a high note. (The fact that their fourth to be album got cancelled due to someone stealing the master tapes, really makes Growing their final achievement.)

To me the first album and Keeping up are the very best of the trio they made. Growing is good, there is no doubt about it. However, there is some things missing resulting in the album missing the mark ever so slightly. While it is well produced, played and full of vision I cannot feel the love for Growing as I do for the other two. Maybe I find the songs to be slightly to similar to each other? Anyway, my doubts leads me to rate this album with three stars. Good, but non essential.

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 Keeping Up by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.58 | 32 ratings

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Keeping Up
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Whilst their first album showed great promise and vision, this second album by Jonesy really allowed them to blossom. From the sort of humble origins, as dsiplayed through their crude yet impressive sound on "No alternative", to this, fully fledged progressive album, the steps taken is something to be marvelled.

The omnipresent mellotron gives me associations to King Crimson and Spring but whilst "No alternative" seemed to rely more on the sounds of others, this album is a far more personal affair. I would not claim that "No alternative" boasted overly complex arrangements, relying more on the hard rock side of prog. That notion, however, is eradicated on "Keeping up". Sure, there are hard rock passages on here aswell but the overall complexity and diversity is more to the fore, making "Keeping up" a much more entertaining affair. The mellotron is also augmented by brass and strings this time around, which also adds to the emotive side of the music. It is dreamy, yet not sleepy. All in all things fall into their places and the canvas is filled with the most delicious colours.

The most complex piece on the album is "Critique (with exceptions)" which is avant-garde, free-form and jazzy. The trumpet of Bown sounds as though they'd invited Miles Davis to play some spooky, off beat passages. I think that this track is interesting as an experiment and gives prrof to the fact that Jonesy was as elaborate, inventive, daring and unpredictable as any of the greats.

The other tracks are less complex but by no means inferior. I think, actually, on the contrary. From the opening "Masquerade", to the ever so beautiful and emotive "Sunset and evening star" and onward "Keeping up" is filled with great music. Inventive, bustling with ideas and visions. The jewel in the crown is the last track, the most epic and to my taste the most fully realized piece of music: "Children". The presence of brass, stabbing and hitting with extreme precision, and the lyrics in conjunction with the shifting sections of music means that this track is one of almost perfect progressive pedigree.

"Keeping up" is Jonesy's best album, as far as I am concerned. It may be that they never broke any new boundaries or travelled to far into the musical horizon but they made albums of great progressive music. Some critic once wrote that Jonesy was the best progressive band you've never heard and that is true enough. Their music, especially on "Keeping up", is just as great as other bands of the era and anyone with an interest in the origins of prog would do well to listen to them.

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 No Alternative by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.28 | 29 ratings

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No Alternative
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by 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.

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 Masquerade - The Dawn Years Anthology by JONESY album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2007
3.86 | 9 ratings

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Masquerade - The Dawn Years Anthology
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by GruvanDahlman
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Jonesy may sound, by just looking at the name, to be just about any 70's pop band playing streamlined tunes for teenagers struck to the ground by boredom and suburbian hopelessness. Yes. But they aren't. They are nothing like that. In reality Jonesy were a highly skilled and cometent bunch of people, welded together by a common vision of how Music ought to be performed This compilation gathers all the output of the band. Three albums and a single. That's it, folks! Though it may not sound alot the sum of it's parts is very impressive indeed.

The music of Jones is an appealing mix of hard rock, folk and some avant garde. I dare say that it sounds vintage but that is to me only charming. Some people argue that there are hints of King Crimson in there and it is but not in any overpowering sense. The music is however very British sounding and holds similarities to other bands of the day,apart from King Crimson. I hear Tonton Mocoute, Ben, Spring and others in that field. The really heavy use of mellotron gives the music that particular sound of early prog, which I adore. Just like Spring, Jonesy makes emotive prog which i both epi and melodious. Jonesy is, however, rawer and oriented towards hard rock of the day. At least that is true in many of the tracks. "Heaven" and "Sunset and evening star" are examples of the mellow side whilst "No alternative" is one of those heavier tracks.

I will not bother to review this compilation track by track. Instead I will say this, that if you are interested in (British) prog of the early 70's this may be something for you. It may not be the boldest of all prog recorded but is certainly very good and Jonesy deserves to more recognized than they are. They were a great.band and I think many a prog fan would find this enjoyable.

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 Keeping Up by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.58 | 32 ratings

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Keeping Up
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Inner tensions among Jonesy's leader John Evan-Jones and the rest of the band continued, resulting the departure of Jim Payne and David Paull, who went on to play with Ken Hensel.Their replacements were Richard "Plug" Thomas and Nicholas Greenwood.Meanwhile John asked his brother Trevor "Gypsy" Jones to consider rejoining the group, as it eventually happened.Even so Greenwood's stint with Jonesy was brief and a fresh reformation included Alan Bown on trumpet and percussion.With Ray Russell (future guitarist of Chopyn) helping out on string arrangements Jonesy recorded their second album ''Keeping up...'' at Escape Studios in March 1973, released the same year on Dawn Records.

Members abandonded the band, but the return of Gypsy Jones helped Jonesy retain the inspiration of the debut, combining elements from Jazz, Orchestral and Pop Music into an attractive progressive amalgam, which is maybe not groundbreaking but comes as warmly recommended.The first few pieces with the dominant Mellotron, the well-crafted vocals, the smooth string/piano lines and the mix of calm and more passionate material showcase why Jonesy were fairly compared to KING CRIMSON.Discreet psychedelic touches, jazzy guitar and trumpets and symphonic Mellotron offer a consistent blend of different influences.The long and rather experimental ''Critique'' comes as a dissapointment, showing Jonesy in a relaxed mood, flirting with Lounge Jazz, theater acoustics and hypnotic, Psychedelic Rock, but things will get back in shape with ''Children'', another long but interesting piece of early-70's Prog Rock with KING CRIMSON vibes and light Horn Rock touches: Dreamy melodies, strong psychedelic guitars, omnipresent Mellotron and dramatic atmospheres.Great cut.

A typical example of diverse and well-executed British Prog of the 70's.Orchestral/jazzy Prog with a wide spectrum of different images.Warmly recommended.

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 No Alternative by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.28 | 29 ratings

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No Alternative
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

4 stars One of British progressive rock's best kept secrets, Jonesy issued three excellent albums during the mid- seventies all in the space of two years. Sadly, however, success would elude Jonesy as the same way it did for many of their peers and they would be terminally overshadowed by he big boys of the era such as Pink Floyd, ELP and Yes. However, despite a relatively small profile, Jonesy managed to build up a small-but-loyal following attracted to the group's eclectic style with the album's 'No Alternative', 'Growing' and 'Keeping Up' each displaying a broad range of sounds and textures indicative of seriously adept musicians. Released in 1972 on the Dawn imprint(also home to the likes of Gravy Train) 'No Alternative' featured a genuine mixed bag of musical tracks, with sombre ballads ('Every Days The Same'), technically tricky rockers ('1958'), maudlin mid-tempo epics ('Pollution') and even jazz-tinged heavy-prog fusion ('Mind Of The Century') peppering an extraordinarily complex selection of tunes. Jonesy's music also featured a series of trademark affectations that would carry on into both of their following releases, with rip-roaringly stretched guitar solo's, soothing mellotron washes and incisive lyrical observations(the environement, politics etc) showcasing a highly-talented outfit who really did deserve better from both the record-buying public and the musical critcs of the day. That said, Jonesy are one of a number of relatively-unknown mid-seventies prog outfits to reform in the 21st century thanks to the rising interest in all things progressive, and as a result the group's trio of fine albums are now being discovered and re-discovered by fans old and new. Of the three, 'No Alternative' features possibly the broadest stylistic range, with the beautifully-executed 'Pollution' , the anthemic title-track and the funky mellotron-soaked corker 'Ricochet'(a track sliced down to size for single release) proving the stand-outs selections. An excellent debut that demands multiple listens, 'No Alternative' is a fine slice of strangely- undervalued prog from a finely-tuned British outfit. In a word: Groovy! STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2012

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 Dark Matter by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 2011
2.75 | 7 ratings

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Dark Matter
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by gr8dane

3 stars Jonesy makes a Pink Floyd album.

Did not know that this had been released,but came across it on I-Tunes.After listening to the samples a few times,decided to spend the $7 .The thing with I-Tunes you don't get any info about the album,so I don't know who is left from the old days.A few years ago I bought the first 3 albums on the 2 cd package,and quite liked the mellotron drenched easy flowing music.

This album doesn't sound much like the old albums,though.Here it's like they make a tribute to Pink Floyd making all original Floyd sounding tracks with the exception of the last track.Some 'Wish you were here','Division Bell and 'Momentary lapse of reason' combo with plenty of sound effects,like waves,kids playing,birds chirping and so on.There is also some Hawkwind flawors here specially some Calvert sounding vocals here and there.

So,as there are no new Pink Floyd albums on the horizon,you may get a nice little fix with this one.For me a nice solid 3 star album.Thanks Jonesy,nice one.

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 Growing by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.38 | 26 ratings

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Growing
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by trackstoni

4 stars With this Album ( in Vinyl) , I Grow Up , when i first saw the Reviews & the Ratings i was really disapointed , but after a while , i though that maybe other opinions may be right , in fact it was not ( with full respect to those ) These kind of releases from 1970 till 1978 kept the torsh of progressive living inside of us , and i mean it , cause after this period came the big mess . So , imagine , if yu ask me now how i feel about this album !!! In 1978 i will rate this album , as a musician , and as a prog . fan a 6 stars easily !!! Today ,,,, and i mean it ( still wondering where , Waltz for Yesterday is gonna End ) another 6 stars Hardly !!!! Jonesy , With three perfect releases , Growing // Keepin' Up & No Alternative Had Something special in My Life , and i believe i know Why , So , Do yu ????????

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 Keeping Up by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.58 | 32 ratings

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Keeping Up
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Jonesy´s second work was released less than an year after their first, but it represented a total shift from style. And line up too. And the most important was the inclusion of Alan Bown on trumpet and flugelhorn. Guitarrist John Evan Jones and keyboardist were the only ones left from the outfit that recorded No Alternative a few months before, now with Jones brother Trevor `Gypsy` joining back on bass and recruiting new drummer Plug Thomas. The result was so different they might as well have changed their name! Instead of the fairly common hard rock/heavy prog of No Alternative, they now have a quite eclectic colletion of songs that were much more progressive, with some interesting jazz, funk and psychodelic leanings. You have to admire their nerve to make such movement.

Although I can hardly say this album is a masterpiece or essential, it is still very good. Far from perfect, as long as songwriting is concerned, the tunes were nevertheless quite bold and inventive. Those new experiments produced some fine songs (masquerade, Questions And Answers) that mixed wah wah guitars, funky bass, mellotron waves, Miles Davies-like trumpet and complex vocal harmonies. Other tracks were less succesful, like the long (9 minute), weird (and annoying) Critique. The beautiful instrumental Preview is just too short, a real shame. Children is an interesting epic ballad with an odd middle part and has its moments of greatness. Song and Sunshine And Evening Star sound good, but a bit unfinished. Production here is much better than their debut. Even the vocals are much superior here .

Keeping Up was a good surprise and showed that this group had skillful players, the songwriting was getting better and they were on the way to create a quite unique music. I´m really curious about their third album. Rating: with all its faults, a very good (transitional) album: 3,5 stars.

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 No Alternative by JONESY album cover Studio Album, 1972
3.28 | 29 ratings

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No Alternative
Jonesy Heavy Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

2 stars 2,5 stars, really. Promising debut work by this english outfit that makes a quite elaborated heavy prog. Their sound is not very original on this album, but at least they prove they are capable of bigger things in the future. The use of a mellotron to make it sound like a Hammond organ is interesting, but hardly better than the real thing. I was told they have King Crimson influences, but you wouldn´t tell that judging by No Alterntive. Ok, there are some nice mellotrons runs but so do many other bands at the time. The KC parts might lie in their latter effords.

The instrumentation is very good, although I found the songwriting here a bit too common. Vocals are only average at best, even if the lyrics seem to be quite clever. The group does not seem to know exactly where they are going to and it shows. The last track for example is a funky number that seems to be more like what Chicago was doing at the time than to anything King Crimson ever did. But the songs themselves are ok.

Since I had an old vinyl copy of the album, I can´t say anything about the CD sound, if it improved the overall quality or not. The original production was only adequate.

Conclusiom: interesting debut, but still green. It makes you want to hear their follow ups to see how much far Jonesy went.

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