June 7, 2007

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Just Jack, Overtones
TVT Records, 2007

At a minimum, Jack Allsop’s preference of ingredients should have your typical fan of chill-electro drooling like a NASCAR blob at a Pabst factory, but it’s his seamless application of same that puts Overtones up there as one of this summer’s must-hear LPs. Grime, funk-tinged chill-techno and bright pastel trip-hop literally could not come together better than this, so naturally the British press is fainting into their stinky fishcakes over it, but for once they’re on to something. Allsop’s two-prong vocal approach wavers between a disaffected stoner caricature and Davy Jones from the Monkees, and he uses it to dish a lyrical beaut that covers some interesting subjects, one being a British TV-talent-show winner who fell to earth after a set of unflattering bikini photos of her in all her chubby glory hit the press (“Starz in their Eyes”). Recent competition here would sort of include Whitey, but he and all other comers are left buried under clean-spirited honesty and sparkly rave-dust. A — Eric W. Saeger