Monday, October 5, 2015
TOM JESSEN: HUNTING SEASON
I got this in the mail a couple weeks back from my pal Tom--his new album Hunting Season. It is really fine, a deft mix of Americana, soul, Tom(s) Keene and Petty, and classic Stiff Records influences--all with Tom's articulate baritone growl and great lyrics. The lyrics are a departure because they are mostly sociopolitical, rather than introspective or personal narrative like his first two records (both awesome).
This arrived at a good time, for me personally, as I reflect more and more on the need to speak articulately myself about where I stand on social issues and political issues. As a high school kid I wrote editorials calling Reagan a murderer and that was pretty extreme stuff, but I was discovering coffee and hormones and Reagan did back some pretty nasty plays for a kindly old avuncular fellow. Over the years (3 decades) I've never wanted to be shrill, or an armchair kneejerk anything, preferring to remain pragmatic and hope that we can all get along while baiting each other on Facebook to pass the passive hours.
So, as the NRA continues to pay politicians to help arm the mentally ill, I appreciate Tom stepping up to social issues and writing a batch of hard-hitting but not obvious or tedious songs about gun violence, fracking, global warming and our generally stuck and non-responsive oligarchic governance. These are not funk folk political songs that will bore the crap out of you at a muddy festival while a burrito drips on your Tevas. These are smart rock numbers.
It's a short run letterpress cd package, printed and signed by Tom himself.