Jim James – Eternally Even
“If you don’t vote, it’s on you not me”, says Jim James on ‘Same Old Lie’. It’s an appropriate sentiment for the day that’s in it. And his Instagram account shows that he clearly endorses the message. But this is no campaign communiqué from Kentucky. This is a stunningly rich solo set from someone who has typically seemed more at home in a band setting, whether it’s My Morning Jacket, New Multitudes, or Monsters of Folk. Eternally Even, his second solo outing, is more grounded than its predecessor, Regions of Light and Sound of God. The spirit still moves within, but here the sentiments are expressed a little more plainly. “If you don’t speak out”, we’re told, “We can’t hear it”. But the music is the revelation. There’s a change of tempo so woozy on ‘In The Moment’ that you almost start to lose your balance. A vinyl sample so egregious on ‘The World’s Smiling Now’ that you can keep time to the scratches from the original. And an outro so outrageous on ‘Same Old Lie’ that it could go on for at least twice as long and still leave you wanting more. This is someone who’s in total command of his craft. And it sounds just great. “They say we can’t live together, but we know that’s a lie”, we’re told, “‘Cause we know in our heart we can make it if we try”. Uplifting thoughts for today of all days. This is Half-Life Music and we endorse this album.