Jaya The Cat - ‘More Late Night Transmissions With…’ (Bomber Music) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Nev Brooks   
Thursday, 29 May 2014 04:00

Jaya The CatWhere do I start with this one? Well how about if I begin by telling you this is probably the best album I have heard this year, and it’s been a blinding year so far for new music, so this must be a blinding record…right? Yup that's a good place to begin. I mean put together ska, reggae, dub and punk and you’re gonna tick every one of my boxes. But it’s not just putting them together it’s about doing it well and making sure the mash up works, and to think this is a re-issue from 2007!!! Damn it that’s just stopped my album of the year tirade right in its tracks…doh!

 

So who are Jaya the Cat? They were formed in Boston way back in 1998 and currently reside in Amsterdam, they’ve released four studio LPs one independent release and a live LP, the pick of them for me apart from this little number being 2012’s ‘The New International Sound Of Hedonism’ (yup I went out and bought the lot after hearing them for the first time).

 

So for people like me who may never have heard Jaya The Cat before ‘More Late Night Transmissions With…’ starts out with the blissful skanking beat of ‘Hold My Beer And Watch This’ mix in the first of the bass dub influences and I can’t help but smile at this minute of instrumental joy. Then we move into ‘Blur’ and as soon as the vocals kick in the punk angle slots in nicely alongside the chilled beats, this is a stunna. Third track up we have ‘Good Morning’ and we have a clean guitar sound that is also dirty and a little mean, again hinting at a punk backbone underpinning the reggae influences.

 

Next up ‘Thank You Reggae’, has a real roots feel again with that punk once again underpinning. There’s more of a ska vibe around ‘Hello Hangover’ and I can’t help but think of The Specials ‘Too Much Too Young’ during this urgent and insistent anthem. ‘Mistake’ meanwhile nails the punk vibe, that's been hanging around just below the surface threatening to take over, actually reminding me of Fishbone at their peak, as for once the ska vibe takes its turn sitting behind the scenes. Then we have one of my personal faves of the record ‘Chemical Salvation’ which dips back into a real rootsy/ska mix up whilst maintaining that urgent guitar sound.

 

And although you might think it impossible things just gets better and better, the band’s observations of modern life are bang on, the sound a fitting match and you just drift along, drawn into the music. I’m not going to go into every song here as the Uber elders would no doubt shoot me, but my other faves include ‘Night Bus’ and ‘Voice Of The Poor’.

 

This really is a must buy for anyone who missed this album (like I did) first time around (the band have added a sublime cover of Jimmy Cliff’s ‘The Harder They Come’ to this version), especially if you like any of the afore-mentioned genres. I’m loving the easy vibe of Jaya The Cat and it looks like I’ll be looking to catch yet another band live. I can’t recommend this highly enough, beg, steal, or borrow yourself a copy but really you should buy the 180gms vinyl and support your local independent.

 

https://www.facebook.com/JayaTheCat

 

To visit the Jaya The Cat store on Amazon - CLICK HERE