Jane In Space – self-titled

Jane In Space

Jane In Space – self-titled

Listening to the ten tracks on this eponymous debut album from the New York-based trio Jane In Space, I thought about what any other listeners might make of it as, seemingly with each individual track, another influence would make its presence known, lurking more or less quietly at the back of the mixing desk which Jane In Space recorded their album with. I’m not so sure what this says about my own level of reviewing experience, when I’m quick to make connections between the songs of a band that are previously unknown to me and other songs that I and a lot of other people know to varying degrees of familiarity, ranging from vague recognition to actually backwards. Of course music reviewers make connections like this all the time; but listening to Jane In Space I began to think that while it is a very good album, with a lot to recommend it, was it exactly what the band themselves wanted their audience – including critics such as myself – to hear?

My biggest, and perhaps only significant criticism of Jane In Space’s album is its production. This is credited to sometime Deftones and NIN collaborator Tom Baker, and while he has done a better than average job of balancing and spatializing the synths and sequencers, the overall sound is a bit of a swirling, opaque sludge, and that works quite well with some tracks although not so well with others. If you remember liking The Klaxon’s during their Surfing The Void period, you might however like this album a lot. There are similarities, and the band sound does share certain qualities. As with The Klaxons though the grimy production can on occasion overwhelm the actual music, which may not actually be a problem if you play the album loud enough. The same could also be said of bands such as TV On The Radio, Late Of The Pier or any of the bands that Jane In Space are probably taking some indirect influences from.

Volume is likely the answer to my criticism of the album’s production, which probably only seems a bit fuzzy through the limited scope of my headphone speakers. That aside, there is a lot going on in the songs themselves as Jane In Space refuse to limit themselves in musical terms, with each track taking a seemingly different direction, from the club-based sound of the album’s opening track, through industrial-tinged excursions such as “Helsinki” and “Dizzy Head”, to the coldwave blast of “Jane3”, the epic balladry of “Spiderwebs” and the techno excess of last track “Feel It Alive”. An album that I began to appreciate more with repeated listenings, perhaps producer Tom Baker knows something that I don’t, as it is quite possible that Jane In Space are going to turn into one of the more memorable bands of the next twelve or so months.

Aion Records