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Freeheat - Retox

  by Olga Sladeckova

published: 11 / 2 / 2002

Freeheat - Retox
Label: Outafocus
Format: CD


Long delayed debut by former Jesus and Mary Chain's frontman Jim Reid's new band

Believe it or not the Jesus and Mary Chain's Jim Reid is officially back to making amazing music. The JAMC broke up in 1998, but Reid (vocals, guitar) and Ben Lurie (guitar), who joined the JAMC at the time of ‘Sound of Speed’ in ’93, reunited towards the end of 1999. Joined by a drummer Nick Sanderson (the former frontman of Earl Brutus) and bass guitarist Romi Mori (ex-member of The Gun Club), they started a brand new band, Freeheat. After several months of writing and rehearsing, Freeheat signed a deal with an independent record label Outafocus. The first musical proof of this collaboration is due out on the 5th November and Freeheat have a lot to show off . Sonorous guitars build up assertively on ‘The Two Of Us’, the introductory track. Nick’s drumming viscerally raises your blood pressure and Jim and Romi’s devotional joint voices complete the song in direct collaboration with the music. If the first track sounds expansive, then the following number ‘Facing Up To The Facts’ is even more so. The song's dense texture emotively hits the senses as it lightly revives the ‘Speedy’ sound. The vocals seem to have been swallowed by and are detached from the music but self-consciously fight their way through, and the two combine perfectly at the end. ‘Shine On Little Star’, which is sung sensitively, starts off with innocent, nearly whispered vocals. The volume then lightly builds up, forcing the vocals and the spirit of the tune up and the song climaxes in deep excitement. The fourth track, ‘The Long Goodbye’, develops further the initially peaceful sound of the last tune. A softly tripping guitar and Jim’s voice, which accepts the tough destiny of his love, smoothes the roughness of some of the other songs away. “Back again, come one”, suggests Reid, dispatching the last song, ‘Nobody’s Gonna Trip My Wire’. The band is back to playing vigorously, and the sound builds up to an enthusiastic finish. All in all, 'Rextox' is a beautiful fully-structured experience. It reflects on the Chained history, but blends it with a wide stream of new ideas. For those of you, whose hearts are devoted to The Jesus and Mary Chain, 'Retox' might play back some memories with its genetic Psycho-Dethroned Speed roots. Freeheat, howver, is completely a new story. A story that is just beginning to be written…

Track Listing:-
1 The Two Of Us
2 Facing Up To The Facts
3 Shine On Little Star
4 The Long Goodbye
5 Nobody's Gonna Trip My Wire

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After the collapse of the Jesus and Mary Chain, singer Jim Reid and guitarist Ben Lurie formed a new band, Freeheat. Olga Sladeckova talks to Ben Lurie about the group and their posthumously released debut album, 'Back on the Water'

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