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Jack Ladder – Love Is Gone (2008)

November 18, 2008

A couple of weeks ago, I took myself off to see Cut Off Your Hands at the HiFi Bar, supported by a young gentleman called Jack Ladder. I had never heard any of his music before, but I was completely blown away by his bluesy, poignant and honest performance, I went and bought his most recent album, Love Is Gone, the very next day (though I just discovered the 20th of November will see the official launch of this album, at the Toff in Town, Melbourne.)
Right from the get-go, with ‘The Barber’s Son’, the intelligence in his lyrics is noticeable, really capturing your attention with their subtle wittiness and his deep, rich voice, with a genuine rock and roll appeal, similar to early Rolling Stones rhythm and blues numbers. ‘Best Kept Secret’ is a bouncy, slightly pop-ier love song that makes you smile as you sing along with Jack’s thoughtful words. ‘Counterfeit Bible’ is a little sharper, with sly guitar and bass, you can imagine the smirk on Jack’s face as he drawls the word out. ‘I Love Your Mind’ is a slower ballad, that is wise beyond its years, the thought-provoking, almost devastating delivery of the words is weathered and worldly, though only coming from a young man, no older than 25 (being my guess.) The title track, ‘Love Is Gone’ is more lively number, with a bouncy tempo and a stark contrast to the song it followed. ‘The Boy’ is a definite rock and roll song with a country-esque beat evident, with a jumpy up and down rhythm to can dance around and clap your hands to.

Another slower one is ‘Starting A War’, a heartbreakingly beautiful love song, almost paired with ‘You Won’t Be Forgotten (When You Leave)’ which is too a slower ballad, with dark and haunting vocals singing about love and loss and heartbreak and all that kind of good stuff, though expresses a delicate sensibility, complementary to the rowdier upbeat rock and roll songs. Though the album finishes on a high with ‘Mother (Bird’s The Word)’, a song you can again dance too, with light-hearted drums, quick keys and of course some harmonica to add to the rock and roll swing attraction of the song.

The easiest (and probably the only somewhat justifiable) comparison I can make with other bands would be a mix between the Rock and Roll of the Rolling Stones, meets the bluesy, menacing appeal of The Wreckery. There is nothing of Jack Ladder’s calibre going around today, and I highly recommend you check him out.

Jack Ladder’s MySpace
Jack Ladder at Spunk Records

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Philippe permalink
    November 18, 2008 12:47 pm

    This album is awesomo!

  2. October 6, 2009 1:35 am

    I went to Wolfmother’s concert and they were opening for them. At first I thought they were quite unique, but now I realize they’re more than just unique. Gone is such a deep and meaningful song. Great review!


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