Popularity, one of just two full-length albums released by Clinton, Mississippi outfit Jonezetta, is a dance rock jam reminiscent of a band like Edison Glass.
This was a pretty unexpected record, and not just for me. Released in 2006, the band toured relentlessly in support of it, often with their friends from just over the Louisiana state line, As Cities Burn. I have many fond memories of it that are forever linked to Cornerstone Florida and Illinois. And when I had my radio show, because it was a perfect fit for our format, they got played alllll the dang time.
My biggest gripe about this band is the fact that they didn’t release more tunes in the style of Popularity, and more specifically, songs like “Get Ready (Hot Machete)” and “Backstabber.”
When I write about their 2008 follow-up album Cruel to Be Yong later this year (whenever it comes up in the random rotation), I hope to find that I appreciate it way more than my initial listenings, because it was such a bummer. So different from Popularity that it killed their following, if I recall correctly. It’s two… maybe ten steps away from the dance rock genre, and while it’s good for what it’s worth, there aren’t ever enough bands like this. They kind of dumped on a good thing.
I get it, it’s good to switch things up, and if your artistic direction is taking you elsewhere, by all means, go for it. I was just disappointed to find out that the sound that brought them to relative popularity (no pun intended) in the “Christian rock” music scene was one that they couldn’t continue with.
Oh well. Such is life.
(Unrelated aside: I’m working in Miami for the first time today. It’s been a long day. Miami has a really different vibe from Tampa. That’s… all I have to report. Haha.)
As a tragic side note, the band is also known as the inspiration for the As Cities Burn song “Timothy,” so named after Timothy Jordan, the band’s 5th member who committed suicide before the release of this album.
From their breakout album Popularity, this is Jonezetta’s “Welcome Home” –
Standout tracks: “Get Ready (Hot Machete)” and “Backstabber”
Weakest track: “The City We Live In” and/or “The Love That Carries Me”
RIYL: Dance pop, dance punk. The Faint, Edison Glass. To a far lesser extent, those clowns in Family Force 5.