Yves Jarvis: Sundry Rock Song Stock (ANTI-) Review | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Thursday, November 26th, 2020  

Yves Jarvis

Sundry Rock Song Stock


Sep 24, 2020 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Yves Jarvis mixes disparate influences into a hypnotic quilt of sound on his third album, Sundry Rock Song Stock. The telling chimes of The Brothers Johnson’s “Strawberry Letter 23,” the pastoral side of Animal Collective, and the exotic call of the azan mix and mingle on a gentle glide path. And that’s just on the first song, “Epitome.” In spite of the album’s throwaway title, it’s clear that Jarvis, who works alone in the studio, painstakingly cobbled together each buried melody, glitch, and gurgle. What may not be so evident is the directness of Jarvis’ lyrics on the barely hued Eurogame green wrapper that the album is bound in. 

Songs transition from the simply beautiful Song of Solomon flavored incantation of worn jewels of “Emerald” to the gentle whispers of “Victim,” that on its surface sounds like a long lost ’70s TV theme song. What “Victim” hides in its midst though is much more direct. “I’m a vitriolic mass of dynamite, just bound to ignite,” is delivered so gently that its early slam poetry/hip-hop roots are dampened by the dewy surroundings.  

Jarvis’ most effective outing to date benefits from its sonic explorations, but also shines brightest in its most straightforward moments. The bass heavy plushness of “For Props” shares the album’s spring garden buzz, but its reproaches are a bit more obvious: “your earned fortune makes you depraved, can’t empathize, or reciprocate.” While the burbling percussion of “Semula” pilots it to the album’s catchiest refrains. Though the album maintains the listener’s interest to the close, the songs near the end fan out into a thinner atmosphere. “Notch In Your Belt” is a mix of nylon-stringed prog rock with a liturgical stop/start rhythm. And the closing “Fact Almighty” provides a blissed out fade somewhere between Eagles’ fence riding loner and Seals and Crofts’ jasmine scented breeze. 

It’s easy to get lost in the cottony fibers of Jarvis’ latest weavings, but its spell is delicately effective. What Jarvis has on his mind is more pressing than the manner in which it’s delivered and that sometimes provides for little immediate resolve. But if getting your thoughts out into the world is what counts, no matter how softly spoken, Jarvis accomplishes that. If you’ve ever witnessed someone whisper down an aggressor, Sundry Rock Song Stock is the tactic’s musical equivalent. Jarvis beckons you into a seemingly bucolic setting, it’s up to you to decide if you want to hear what he’s trying to tell you. (www.yvesjarvis.com)

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 5/10


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