REVIEW: Jim Of Seattle’s “We Are All Famous”

Jim Of Seattle We Are All Famous (Green Monkey) is pop eclecticism at its very best. Take the professional recording studio and home recording quirks, along with that passion to be self-contained, like Brian Wilson, Todd Rundgren, and Prince, and combine them in a mix that involves creating voluptuous music but by balancing on the cusp/rim/lip while maintaining incredible balance. That’s one Jim Owen, who is simply known as Jim Of Seattle. He sings all of the lead vocals and does most of the background vocals and instrumentation here, so when you step into We Are All Famous, you are very much entering the domain of Jim Of Seattle. Not Seattle, although that’s very much a clue, but Jim Of Seattle. There’s a lot of depth in his songs that may sound like mini-stories, or tracks like the instrumental “A Conversation”, which seems to be a passageway towards something much more grand (or simply the next phase). He uses natural sounds with great results, but he also isn’t afraid to use electronic drums to make a statement within a statement. Then you have a track like “Black Lung” (a Rancid cover done nothing like you’d expect) which may sound like something you’d revive out of your dream based on a school auditorium assembly.

Even with a lyric sheet, it’s hard to say if this is a concept album, an album with a running theme, a theme within a concept, a concept within a few themes, or just a collection of songs that are there to fuck with your mind in order to find some sense or continuity. If music is a game, We Are All Famous is a practical game piece and Jim Of Seattle is a very spirited player. Others may give up on the game due to exhaustion, but Jim Of Seattle is not in it to win it, but merely to play for the spirit of playing. For that, he is a gold medal winner.

(You may stream We Are All Famous in full, below via Soundcloud or Bandcamp.)

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