Exposé Online banner

Rob Jacobs — Rob Jacobs
((Not on label) no#, 2013, DL)

by Jon Davis, Published 2015-07-29

Rob Jacobs Cover art

Rob Jacobs is the lead singer and guitarist of the band Wei Zhongle, whose Raised High / Brought Low I reviewed a while back. The fact that this, his solo album, sounds the same as the band's is testament to the band being largely his vision. Barring the near-complete lack of clarinets, Rob Jacobs (the album) is very similar to Wei Zhongle's music. Guitar, often prepared in ways that alter the tone, is the foundation on which his unconventional vocals are built, with their Asian inflections and odd melismas. Jacobs also covers a variety of other instruments (not listed, but apparently including bass, drums, and occasional keyboards) and invited a small number of guests to contribute percussion and clarinet (on two of the tracks – apparently he really loves the sound of clarinets!). The use of drums is minimal, more for accent than time-keeping, never really setting up conventional patterns. Yes, “unconventional” is the main adjective that comes to mind when listening to this music. To bring up a few examples, “Find Joyous Nest” is a short spoken-word piece with some vocal treatments; “For Gladys” features acoustic guitar, an active bass part, and multiple overdubbed vocal parts weaving in and around the clarinets; “Golden Flower” has multiple acoustic guitars backing the lead vocal, and cymbals, snare drum, clapping to provide rhythm, along with something that may or may not be a keyboard for coloration. The whole thing is very inventive, unpredictable within the idiosyncratic boundaries of its style, and a sure antidote to the same-old same-old singer-songwriter fare. Give it a whirl!


Filed under: New releases, 2013 releases

Related artist(s): Rob Jacobs

More info
http://robjacobs.bandcamp.com/album/rob-jacobs

Latest news

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Birdsongs of the Mesozoic - Petrophonics – Ever since I first heard this band back in the early 80s, I’ve been fascinated by their style: rock instrumentation playing challenging music which is not based in the conventions of rock and...  (2001) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues