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Jim Dead & The Doubters – Pray for Rain (2015)

February 1, 2016

UK

exemplary artwork by Sarca @ caughtmegaming

Made in the UK Artist #1: Duran Duran

Made in the UK Artist #2: The Charlatans

Made in the UK Artist #3: Elton John

Made in the UK Artist #4: Pet Shop Boys

Made in the UK Artist #5: Jim Dead & The Doubters

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Due to the nature of the 1001 albums project, I listen primarily to music released between 1955-2005. When I picked this CD up last year, it felt very out of character to be acquiring an album in its year of release. So for the first time in recent memory, I’ll be reviewing an album that was released in recent memory!a0137445401_16

When I listen to a new-to-me artist, I’ve realized I tend to look for three things:

1. Where can I play this?

In the winter I tend to listen to music at home/at work/in the car. Most music works pretty well in one location, but is less effective in others. Some music ain’t bad in 2 of the 3.

Pray for Rain is one of those rare albums that seemed to work equally well, regardless of where or when I listened.

Slide1

2. What am I listening to/for? (ending on a double preposition, sorry english teachers!)

Am I focusing solely on the music, while the lyrics drift along? Are the words commanding too much attention and disrupting the musical flow?

With this Jim Dead & The Doubters release, the balance is optimal. The music is memorable, the lyrics matter, they mesh nicely.

Slide2

Some of my favourite musical moments: the 3rd line of the May the Road Rise intro, the Home side snare hits & abrupt ending, the Wooden Kimono groove.

And some lyrical highlights: “played loud music to keep out the noise,” “somewhat lost yet always tethered to home,” “cause those telephone lines tell lies”

3. Do I want to hear more?

A resounding yes, for the reasons above and below.

Each of the tracks on Pray for Rain manages to remind me of something else, yet sound like nothing else. That ability to sound instantly familiar yet completely original kept me coming back, as shown graphically here.

Slide3

I’m not sure if many artists have albums that provide such agreeable answers to my 3 questions. Which puts Jim Dead & The Doubters (incidentally, terrific backing band name) in pretty exclusive company, smack dab in the middle of the 3-circle diagram.

Slide4

In the interest of full disclosure, I “knew” Jim prior to listening, as he is a fellow blogger.

Also in the interest of full disclosure, I know (no quotation marks) this is a stellar album regardless.

I now have a new favourite Glaswegian artist.

Well done lads.

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For further Jim Dead appreciation, I practically insist you read these fine reviews from Aaron, Deke, Brian, and Mike!

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31 Comments
  1. This is awesome, Geoff. Really kind words and graphs! Marvellous. Thank you! And I’m sure The Doubters will be right chuffed!

    • jprobichaud permalink

      Hey! Is this your album? If so, how do I get my hands on such an item?

    • J – twas the album that was marvellous, I really enjoyed!

      • Shucks. Let’s call both the album and your post marvellous, huh? Cause graphs!!!

  2. Shit I knew you’d do something over the top with graphs 🙂 Well done sir, I really am jealous of your knack for it. I’m jealous of Jim Dead’s talent too!

    • Haha, I lack the wordsmith skills that you guys possess, they say go with what you know, and I’m a graphs enthusiast!
      Thanks Mike – and agreed, that JD is a talent!

      • Seriously though — all respect to JD and his talent — this was a fantastic post. I’m dying to know if you randomly make graphs in real life. Like, “Oh, grocery budget…let’s make a graph!”

      • A grocery budget graph, that’s not a bad idea! If only I had useful skills, we had to call a plumber to fix our shower, an HVAC expert to look at our furnace, a mechanic to fix our car – but graphs to express my feelings about music, not a problem!

      • Oh dude, you sound like me. I’m glad to have an un-handy buddy!

        Remember Red Green? “If the women don’t find ya handsome, at least they’ll find ya handy.” Not this guy!

      • Some friends and I suggested starting a support group, we husbands that are un-handy at best – you’d be an asset to the group Mike!

      • I’ll be happy to moderate on alternating Wednesdays.

  3. Aw yes, Geoff bringing the graphs and words of appreciation! Well done, sir, I love this stuff.

    Great music, great posts all around, what a super-cool way to start off February!

    • Many thanks Aaron, I tend to see the world graphically!
      And very much agreed, what a nice start to the month, so cool seeing several consecutive Pray for Rain posts in my reader this morning!

  4. Hackskeptic permalink

    Nice review! Graphically justified it’s a winner. Where do I find it Geoff?

  5. Jim Dead will need to use these wicked graphs on the website and cd covers.
    Lyrically significant and musically memorable indeed.

  6. Wonderful work Geoff!

  7. Nice one James.
    Nice one Geoff.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Jim Dead & The Doubters – Pray For Rain | keepsmealive
  2. The Chemical Brothers – Dig Your Own Hole (1997) | 1001albumsin10years
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