A little funk in your life is never a bad thing and while it’s usually left to an older generation of artists to give us some funk, Jericho are breaking with tradition and bringing funk back to an audience who think of funk as a mood rather than a genre of music. Let me just say funk one more time, because I like the funking sound of it!
Jericho’s debut EP entitled Tantra, landed on my desk just last week and I had no expectations or idea’s of how it was going to sound. Saying that, the minute I uploaded it to my laptop and gave it a listen, I was surprised by the music. The only way I can describe it is Prince mixed with Michael Jackson but performed by pasty Irish men & women. The songs themselves are nostalgic but without ripping off any other artist. And all this from a young band based in Cork.
So a little few bits about Jericho….The band is lead by the enigmatic Darragh Keary (Keys, Vocals), he is joined by Tommy Buckley (Guitar), Steve O’ Brien (Drums), Eoin Fennessy (Bass), Muireann Holly (Vocals), and last but certainly not least Sarah Barry (Vocals). They list they’re main influences as Prince, Stevie Wonder, Kate Bush, Sly and The Family Stone, and Earth Wind and Fire. These bands have a heavy impact on the sound of Jericho with their funk (there’s that word again!) and harmonies abound through out. After listening to the EP a few times, the one thing I can say is that it makes me sway. I was internet browsing and found myself dancing in my seat. The EP contains three songs, Hit It!, Nora, and A Kiss Where it Hurts. As for the lyrics, maybe it’s just me and my duuurty mind, but they seem down right filthy. Every song is full of innuendo and sexual references but you don’t hear them at first. I found myself singing some of the lyrics to myself while cooking dinner. ‘Hit It’s “Take it off like banana peel” was stuck in my head for three days! The lyrics in all the songs leave enough for the imagination and a far cry from obvious muck that are in (all) pop songs around at the minute. It’s refreshing to listen to music where the effort has been put in to every little detail.
I was lucky enough to get to see Jericho in action just a few days ago in The Courtyard Venue, for their first ever Limerick gig. I was expecting a high, energy performance and that’s what I got. The audience spanned from a wide range of people, from the student who happened to be passing by and pop their head in, to the random guy holding up the bar. There wasn’t an unhappy face in the pub. Everything was perfect from timing to harmonies and if you closed you eyes, you would swear you were listening to the CD. Muireann and Sarah on vocals channel Aretha Franklin as if she died and came back in these Irish girls for the mad laugh. All I got to say is, Adele better watch her back, she’s got competition with these ladies. Front man Darragh, well he has moves that James Brown would covet, I think I heard Prince quaking in his purple suede boots when Darragh broke it down and showed us all white Irish guys really can dance.
Overall, I really look forward to seeing this band again as they kept me happy every minute of the night. The EP is definitely one for the Ipod or whatever musical device you choose to use. You can’t be sad listening to their music, not even for a second, I practically skip into town waiting for more people to join me in a flash dance (It hasn’t happened yet). You can listen to the EP here and don’t forget to like these lovelies on their FaceBook as well.
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