JAUGERNAUT (A.D.)


"Contra-Mantra" (Self-produced; 2005)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

Jaugernaut (A.D.) is basically a one-man project and that man is Jim Johnston. Jaugernaut (A.D.) plays progressive symphonic rock. I’ve not really paid much attention to symphonic rock of any kind, but I’ve listened to it quite frequently over the years in an attempt to keep my wide musical horizons in the broadest sense possible. From what I hear in Jaugernaut (A.D.) I would make a comparison that the music is most in the vein of Emerson Lake & Palmer.

“Contra-Mantra” attempts to tell the story of how “evil” got started. Seems like a big undertaking, doesn’t it? Well, it is – and luckily Jim Johnston realizes it, too. He will eventually release “Contra-Mantra II” which will finish this long tale. Regardless, “Contra-Mantra” has the structure and flow of a classic progressive rock album – song-lengths vary as needed to tell the story properly. The epic tracks show the most variety, but the shorter tracks rock the hardest. Either way the songs assist the storytelling – and that’s exactly what you’d expect from a good progressive rock album.

“Contra-Mantra” covers a lot of musical ground. The disc does more than just sit in one stylistic niche – and at nearly an hour it’s nice to see “Contra-Mantra” have some variety going for it. Like most one-man projects the disc comes off a little flat in certain spots – but that’s to be expected. The vocals are far better than I imagined they’d be – Jim Johnston’s voice is a good rock voice that is neither too deep nor too high. The range might not be too great, but that’s okay. 

“Contra-Mantra” was produced by Jim Johnston with technical assistance from Tyler Johnston. “Contra-Mantra” is proof that you can make a good sounding record with today’s home recording equipment.

Jaugernaut AD: Jim Johnston on all instruments and vocals except for Jim Brammer (guitar solos), Marty Prue (classical guitar), Jim Crutchfield (spoken word vocals), and Tyler Johnston (keyboards).

For more information visit http://www.jaugernaut.com


"Contra-Mantra" (Self-produced; 2005)

Reviewed by Snidermann

When I first saw that I was reviewing a band named Jaugernaut, I thought I was in for quite the rock'n'roll, heavy metal trip. Sadly, I was highly disappointed.

"Contra-Mantra" is too slow, too light and not hard or heavy at all. Not only didn't it kick ass, it's way too long drawn-out and depressing. I'll give the band one guitarsaw for their spelling of Jaugernaut, but now I'm off to listen to some Slayer, just to cleanse my pallet.

Jaugernaut AD: Jim Johnston on all instruments and vocals except for Jim Brammer (guitar solos), Marty Prue (classical guitar), Jim Crutchfield (spoken word vocals), and Tyler Johnston (keyboards).

For more information visit http://www.jaugernaut.com


Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

 


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Revised: 15 Mar 2017 23:14:52 -0500 .