Review: Jogging House – Longings (2012)

3044907357-1I’ve had him here on my site before and he represents something odd, which is R&B-flavored IDM executed in a more experimental way. First song on this cassette is “My This, My That”, which display a rhythmic and spastic way in which the sound progresses slowly over time, but generally stays the same. But I love how it conjures a subliminal picture in my head of romanticism, sounding like the pop-songs of yesteryear blended with fabulous electronica which keeps the shape and form of the sampling on as an undertone. It sounds pop-ular, but certainly heed to unorthodox elements to make it on its own. Even though the sound-scape might not be that unusual in a sense, but I think the wave of emotions that it sends out by combining both the IDM-ish creativity with the sampling, makes it so much more interesting to delve into. Melancholia has a strong grip in this song, but it’s only noticeable in the perspective of the listener, as you combine the meaning of the sampling with the rest of it. You get a strong feeling of alienation, of concrete buildings towering up all around you as you try to make out something of your whereabouts in life. Somehow, it channels a sense of dismay but at the same time a realization of how big this world is. The suggestive sampling is one of the hints on the way, but if you analyze it yourself, you might have other conclusions. These are the wonders of this song, since it is provocative in a laidback sense of the word, as it sees the world from a perspective and is trying to get you on board.

Next song on the cassette is “Love 2 Love U“, which helps you delve deeper into the glass. Ever thought of how music have a tendency to change, as your perception of it withers, the more you drink? I would say that this is exactly something you could hear, if listening to the latest songs at a club, whilst getting too tipsy. It could also be a moment of clarity, where you wonder how you’ve ended up in this situation. Or maybe, you’ve seen a girl a few times but never dared to ask her out. It’s a soundtrack for every lonely soul out there. The sampling in this song is doing everything right, as the sampled females – delve out of the dungeon to sing their hearts out. It is fascinating how much you can delve into regular life and make it sound even more vibrant, by doing music about it. One of the essences of Jogging House seem to be around the odd sampling, every now and then. Since it drives the tempo up, change a scale here and there, make you enjoy the song even more than it would’ve been without it. Even though the lo-fi drums and handclaps can be one thing, the sampling essentially heightens the experience that the lo-fi sound-scape just couldn’t do on its own. There’s something original and unique about this, not the sampling per se – but how it is being sampled and used. Even though people chop things up, they usually don’t tend to place it very well. It seems like these samplings are well-thought out and seem to derive from the classic R&B-style. Also, the emotions that you get from the sincerity of it, is beyond imaginable.

On the other hand, the next song “That Thing I Do“, seem to come in a darker and deeper vein. When it feels rough, it can also have an edge to it. The sound-scape comes in basically the same packaging, but there’s something beneath it that needs to be investigated. There seems to be a constant pattern that doesn’t constrain itself. Like walking on thin air, the beats are precise and the samplings have their place, too. It’s like you’re breathing in the perfume of a lovely lady, while standing outside, smoking a cigarette. When it comes to the samples, some of them actually sound like they’re straight from the 90’s, but the first thing that comes to mind is happy hardcore or gabber. Technically, they’re pretty similar, at least when it comes to that. Sometimes it can get a little bit too repetitive, since there’s a long way to go to become something unique. With this song, Jogging House demonstrates how it is to be him and what his different opinions are musically. There’s something basic here, something more complex there, but ultimately he relies on making the subliminal connection between the listener’s interpretation and his own. As all the sincerity of the song grabs you by your legs and make you find your own way, there’s also a hint of nefariousness. However, I would’ve hoped that it could’ve become a little bit more complex at times, but I guess his edge is what drives him forward.

Here’s where it gets even more interesting. The fourth song “Don’t Go Away“, which is on the B-side, demonstrates that he’s not all about lo-fi. You could call it minimalistic if you want, but there’s a lot more deepness to it. Here, you’re presented with an even more mind boggling piece of music. It could’ve come straight out of a scary movie, but at the same time it sounds a little bit childish. There’s something atavistic about it, which keeps it rolling, but it sends out some really heinous signals. The gloomy synthesizer is in the center of the attention for me, the way the swooping sound in the background keeps it upheld is marvelous. Since it gets under my skin, I feel a lot of it inside of me. Emotionally, it feels like rejection but at the same time being connected. Like a wonderful relationship, as it fades out in darkness, after your other half leaves the scene. This song might be one of the favorites so far, since it brings about the musical depiction of two separate, but closely related subjects. It feels like the shallowness of the R&B-sound is deepened, as the clock ticks and the song run towards its own demise. One thing it’s managed to do, is to make you stray away from the typical etiquette that is being put on the genre R&B. Because it’s a part of it, as much as the electronic elements are. Things have changed and they’ve changed for the better.

As for the upcoming song “I Might Love You“, it lacks some qualities that would’ve been appropriate. There’s something about it that is too shallow and unengaged, that I find it difficult to listen to it. As the beat continually prances around, it sounds like it’s not up to par with what I’ve heard on the rest of the album. I think it’s too unorganized and there’s too many things happening at once. In the other songs, Jogging House managed to stray away from that. When I listen to it, I can’t really decipher the different elements of the song and in the end, it becomes remotely annoying. However, every song can’t be that good, that’s just how it is. He does a fine job of letting the weird atmosphere go from crazy to a little bit more soothing.

Last song on the cassette is the song “Woman“. It might just be an ode to women, which is a conclusion many people would draw from it. The somewhat subliminal but apparent sampling of “you” and then “me“, hints that it’s just something more than that. There’s a lot of things going on at the same time and it draws my attention from it. But at times, it changes for a little bit more comprehensible sound-scape. As it progresses, there’s a huge sense of sensuality in the mix as it blends with the instrumentation surrounding it. Amidst all the confusing elements, there’s still something that can be drawn from this. It’s an inspirational song that delivers a multitude of messages, which can be analyzed and disseminated at your own will. Somehow, I think this song embodies what Jogging House is all about. There’s a lot of focus on what he’s good at and there’s also a deepening of the different spheres he’s acting within. However, he seems to jump out of the box from time to time, which might be a choice or just a coincidence. As he proceeds to deliver messages throughout the sound-scape, some things must be sharpened. It would seem like there’s an edge, but he delivers it in different settings for the listener. Hopefully, the sound will get even better and he’ll find a place where he wants to reside. But there’s a long way to go down the narrow path he’s proceeded to walk on. In the end, it’s a pretty good record which deserves to be a bit above the word “good“, so check it out!

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