Album Review: Stolen Jars – A Reminder

Brooklyn four-piece Stolen Jars has evolved from a New Jersey high-school bedroom project to an important piece of the Brooklyn DIY music scene; that growth is apparent in the band’s third full-length record, A Reminder, out Friday, October 11. Each track is carefully constructed so as to provide a detailed narrative of love and loss, and the album’s musical textures are nothing short of mesmerizing.

unnamed.jpgThe record opens with its title track. “A Reminder” features pretty, intricate guitar picking as well as lush swells of intensity and hypnotizing rhythmic patterns; as the music builds energy and then releases it, vocalists Cody Fitzgerald and Sarah Coffey sing about a lost love (“I’m wasting my time again/My love is everything I forget”). Fitzgerald’s voice is strong, and Coffey provides a lighter shadow behind his smooth vocals – the overall effect is stunning.

A Reminder continues in a similar fashion, constructing careful layers of melody and instrument and rhythm to create tracks that are altogether unique in texture and captivating in sound. “Winona,” the first single from the album, showcases several instruments and melodic paths at once, overlapping many voices into one rich, colorful chorus as Fitzgerald and Coffey unite once again (“I’ll keep countin’ back from ten/’Til I find you again”).

And because the tracks each utilize complex sonic textures and those combinations are each unique, every song contains something new and exciting. “Right Here” features a gritty electronic line, whereas “Younger Nights” uses a distorted, almost spacey melody and “Space By Your Side” contrasts a low bass line with flutey electronic bits.

“Interstate,” however, is a standout on the record; it is highly electronic, and it feels as though dozens of different melodies move at once during the chorus. The result is a rich, thick, velvety sound that conveys a similar intensity as the emotional lyrical content (“Interstate/I was hoping we could take a drive again/Into cold midnights where you told me how you’d rather die than live/For this”), yet the track drops out near the end, finishing with a series of distorted string interjections and leaving listeners with space to comprehend and evaluate.

StolenJarsPressPhoto1.jpg
Photo by Tonje Thilesen.

A Reminder is a fascinating and enticing record; the detail and effort put into its creation are evident throughout every second of the music. The album will be released Friday, October 11; pre-order the album via Stolen Jars’ Bandcamp page below, and stream and purchase the first few singles now.


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