Jay Jays (HOL, 1966)

Only hardcore collectors of 1960s rock, and of 1960s Eurobeat, specifically, are even aware of the Dutch group the Jay-Jays, who released one LP and seven singles on Philips in Holland between 1966 and 1968. Starting off as an extremely Kinks-influenced band -- three of the four tracks on their first two singles were based on early Kinks' recordings -- they also tried their hand at soul, soul-pop, folky pop/rock, and bashing pseudo-garage-punk. Like a lot of the second-level bands from the Continent, though, they never really came to grips with any one style; they didn't write compelling material; they weren't brilliant singers or instrumentalists, sometimes even sounding clumsy in their approximation of Anglo-mod stylings, though they were reasonably competent and at times fiery. All of their tracks were compiled for the 1995 CD compilation The Complete Story on Mercury in Holland.
The Jay-Jays' only album basically combined their four first singles with five other tracks, though it somehow missed one side of one of the 45's, "Waauw!" It's uneven, heavily British Invasion-influenced rock, divided between originals and covers. The early Kinks in particular come in for heavy tribute; the group trying their hand at the early Kinks' numbers "Bald Headed Woman" and "So Mystifying," as well as basing their arrangement of Slim Harpo's "Got Love if You Want It" on the Kinks' cover. The Kinks' tunes are done rather lamely, and the group did better with some originals in a more confident, slightly garage-ish, sub-Anglo style, like "I Keep Tryin'," and the bound-to-be-misinterpreted "To-day I'm Gay." The highlight might be "Cruncher," an uncharacteristically wild instrumental whose distorted guitar and maniacal drums seem clearly influenced by the early Who. Some other tracks are more disappointing, sounding like timid pop-folk tunes or forced soul-rock.



David Prensil said...

great band!

Pablo Cazorla (a.k.a. The Bomber) said...

gitit!no passw.
(quote RYP!)

Anonymous said...

no artwork is bullshit!

Anonymous said...

Could you please reupload it?