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Jaya The Cat - Basement Style - cd -

Price per Unit (stuk): €21.95

Here's the paradigmatic tercet; it's short on grace but long on paradigm: "I like punk rock/I love reggae/And if you wanna talk heavy metal it better be from the '70s not the '80s." That pretty much says it all, and by now you're thinking "Oh great, another punky ska band." But believe it or not, this one's different. For one thing, Jaya the Cat is a punk band first and ska/reggae outfit second. That means that the skanking offbeats are kept firmly yoked to the song itself and are never given the chance to giddy up past the point of reasonable speed; it also means that the music tends to serve the words and not the other way around. That's not to say that the music is second-rate; on the contrary, this muscular guitar/guitar/bass trio (with guest drummer for the studio debut) possesses an admirable command of both chops and hooks, and singer Geoff has mastered the subtle art of shouting in a way that delivers melody without seeming to. The charts are pretty consistent: mid-tempo punk guitars lay down thick-as-a-brick offbeats and the drums alternate between straight-up rock and simmering one-drop, with the occasional turntablist interlude. Typical masterpieces include the hilarious anti-religion screed "Wilderness" and the hilarious anti-California screed "Cultifornia." Wind your waist and bang your head.

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