Jackyl - ROWYCO
Before going into this review, I am going to let the cat out of the bag... This is a spoiler alert of the highest variety: there is NO CHAINSAW on this album. I know… it is HARD to believe. I mean, Peter Frampton has his talk-box, Sammy has a margarita, Halford has studded leather, Jimi Hendrix has a wah pedal... (Kirk Hammett won’t stop using a wah pedal...), Ted has a Wang Dang, Kansas has a violin and John Popper blows a harmonica. Jackyl has chainsaw. This is a bold step outside the rock box for the band. Not only is there zero chainsaw, there are no other implements of yard or household destruction anywhere to be found... nary a shovel or a hoe.
ROWYCO is the most juvenile delinquent sounding title in years (think most Halen albums), and these dudes are like half a century old. Part of me sees this as what is wrong with this generation and the other part of me loves it! Aw hell, it is funny. Jackyl is funny. They are dudes that will rock you as a band and then help you change the oil in your car. They will tag team a legal-aged groupie and then raise money for a children’s charity. They are bad guys with good hearts. Or are they good guys with bad hearts? Maybe they are just guys… without any pretense… most men, other than the ones with man buns, struggle between being that ‘good boy’ that mommy says we are and the horrible-type someone’s mother warned them about.
Jackyl is this to the tenth degree. And that is what makes them so charming. Other than a lack of a chainsaw solo, ROWYCO is the same stuff as every other album by Jackyl. It is three, maybe four chords, funny lyrics, loud drums and bass and basic, yet in-your-face guitar riffs and solos. It is American rock ‘n’ roll with a distortion pedal. It is country music, too... if country music was played with Les Pauls through Marshall stacks and was drunk... with a dash of Rohypnol.
ROWYCO does not have a clunker on it. There are three songs that are the cream of this crop, though. The first song, “Rally” is a motorcycle rally cranked up so loud you can hear it on the moon. This is everything that is right about a band like Jackyl. “Ahead of My Time” is one of the better rock epics this band has ever written. The other outstanding tune is the country tinged “Just Because I’m Drunk.” This one should get the crowd at the Full Throttle in Sturgis into a frenzy.
Frontman Jesse James Dupree agrees that this is a classic album for his band. “It's a Jackyl record at its core, but there are some tracks, lyrically, that I went a little deeper on a personal level with some things I had going on at the time. It is the thickest sounding production that we have ever recorded. It’s just a huge slice of rock. Rowyco is a very diverse album and every track has its purpose."
While they may not be accused of reinventing the wheel with this album, this is another slab of rock with the purpose of having fun in life. What’s so bad about that? Hell, the world could use more bands like Jackyl… in small doses of course... I mean, we have to go to work tomorrow.
This one is worth cranking up!
Track-listing for Jackyl's Rowyco is as follows:
03. "All Night Rodeo”
04. "Ahead of My Time”
05. "Just Because I'm Drunk”
06. "Everyone's A Winner”
08. "Hammer To The Head”
10. "Blast Off”
By Jeb “I Stand Alone Today” Wright
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