JOBOJ

"X" (Quad Records; 2002)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

I was duly impressed by the delightful musical shenanigans that Joboj released as "Orange" way back in 1999. Even to this day, "Orange" manages to be a steady part of my rotation of music when my tastes are leaning toward guitar-based instrumentals.

"X," however, presents a more serious and somewhat darker side of Joboj's musical ruminations. "X" does not contain nearly as much of the carefree attitude and crazy tangents that "Orange" does. However, that doesn't make "X" any less enjoyable because Joboj still throws all caution to the wind and utilizes his expansive knowledge and broad set of guitar skills while still allowing his imagination to run rampant through each track's creative ether.

"X" slices and dices its way through twelve (mostly) hard rocking instrumentals with Joboj at the helm. It may not sound like Joboj has a handle on his songs, but he's truly in control by constantly pushing and pulling each track back and forth from the fringes of his imagination. Most of the crazier material appears on the first half of "X" while a few 'ballads' are included in the latter half. However, the 'ballads' are centered around semi-sinister atmospheric moods rather than purely romantic melodies.

Additionally, Joboj incorporates subtle electronic/synthesizer elements into the crevices of "X" without taking the focus away from the guitar or the overall mood of the songs. That's no mean feat and has the added bonus of making "X" sound different, but not too different, than "Orange."

Guitar fanatics and fans of instrumentals will do well to pick up Jobojís "X."

"X" was produced by Joboj.

Joboj does everything on "X."

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

"Raw Sausage Finger" (Quad Records; 2001)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

"Raw Sausage Finger" contains five mixes of Joboj's song of the same name from his 1999 release "Orange." In my review of "Orange" (below) I singled out the song "Raw Sausage Finger" for its solid hard rock foundation amidst all the other musical variety Joboj was able to convey. While I admit I'm not a fan of re-mixes I'll tell you I was very intrigued to hear what Joboj would do in twisting and turning his own song into alternate versions.

The first version of "Raw Sausage Finger" is the same version that appears on "Orange." The four additional mixes here nip and tuck the main riffage of "Raw Sausage Finger" and provide different shades of the same color. I had mentioned Joboj's dexterity and imagination then and proof positive of Joboj's skills are in these four alternate mixes.

The "Phly Mix" takes the song and gives it a bubbling mix as though the track had taken a 'happy pill' without losing the song's upbeat hard rock personality.

The "Sonic Decimator Mix" gives the track a decidedly bass-heavy and electronica buzz without resorting to stereotypical electronica faults such as mind-numbing repetition, high-pitched squeaks, or a dull 4/4 bass throb. The energy of the guitars are jacked up a couple of notches, too, with the sound compressed and sliced into a compact nuggets of adrenaline fitting of this crazed guitar hero.

The "Smoove Mix" (you read that right, it's not 'smooth') displays Joboj's R&B skills as the main riff is turned into a sly, funky vamp that's damn near 'sexy' like all good R&B songs. Even though the "Smoove Mix" has a laid back R&B groove it's still got that forward motion that heavy music should convey at all times.

The "Wackbird Mix" is just that - a wacky collage of twisted sounds underneath the main riff of the song that gives the track multiple personality disorder.

"Raw Sausage Finger" proves to be a satisfying collection of alternate journeys of one man's stellar approach to music. Fans of guitar music would be wise to check out Joboj and fans of his music would be wise to add "Raw Sausage Finger" to their collections. 

Joboj performs all guitars, bass, keyboards, drums, and assorted vocal noises on the tracks. 

For more information visit http://www.gtrbque.com (get it?).

"Orange" (Quad Records; 1999)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter

"Orange" is a disc full of guitar rock instrumentals that surge with adrenaline, oblique melodies that slice light and sound, and tunes that find blissful delight in chicanery. Who possesses such talents? Why, Joboj, of course!

Joboj proves to be a guitarist with dexterity, imagination, and a great sense of humor. Joboj has a wide array of skills and he isn't afraid to use them. Joboj paints with varied palette of musical colors; the tonal differences from track to track keeps the listener on edge. Each track has its own unique personality; I'd imagine Joboj to be a "plug 'n' play" type of guitar player - you could feel confident that no matter the situation that he could find an appropriate guitar part and tone. 

There are many highlights on "Orange." The wildly industrial and chaotic "Thrown Down A Mountain," the zany ditty "Pooper," the ebb-and-flow of "Hooloovoo," the reflective jazz-tinged intro of "The Twiddle," the snap-crackle-pop of "Inner," and the foundation-solid hard rock of "Raw Sausage Finger." What good is an instrumental album without a schizophrenic track? "Chumley" has it all; furious chug-a-chug riffing, a Western twang in the melody, and some sharp, industrial madness. Two acoustic instrumentals, "Sleeping" and "Garden Of Eggs," are also included and demonstrate another side of Joboj's wide-ranging fret-board skills.

Special note must be made of the mentally unstable, yet cool noise of "Psychotic Circus." After faking the listener out as though there was a hidden track, the song goes on for nearly twenty-eight minutes in an in-and-out, cut-and-paste fashion where it seems that anything and everything was committed to tape. Only after much thought was the track edited by removing certain parts - one can literally hear the fade in/out throughout the track. "Psychotic Circus" is a collage of variations on an idea that get put through the ringer in the production room. It's hard at first to fathom the scope of this track, but it's deliriously good to the ears after a while. 

This is truly one of the more enjoyable CDs I have had the pleasure of reviewing.

"Orange" was produced, mixed, and engineered by Joboj. Joboj played all the instruments except for the drums on one track.

For more information visit http://www.gtrbque.com/ and taste the orange.

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 .