Artists | Issues | CD Reviews | Interviews | Concert Reviews | DVD/Video Reviews | Book Reviews | Who We Are | Staff | Home
Non-Prog CD Reviews

Jake Merritt

Old Soul

Review by Gary Hill

There is a fairly wide range of sounds here from roots music to jazz, alternative and more. It's all delivered with a maturity and proficiency that is admirable. More importantly, it all works, and it doesn't feel like something that's lacking direction. There is a certain vibe that permeates the whole set. I think this is a great release that might wind up in my best of 2023 list. There is still a lot of music to come for this year, but this is a contender for the list right now.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2023  Volume 2. More information and purchase links can be found at:

Track by Track Review
There is a killer jazz groove that opens this built on a clean guitar sound and a wailing horn. The cut works out from there to a soulful sound. This is melodic, classy and just so tasty. This has some funk in the mix, and I absolutely love the guitar soloing later.
Don't Go Too Far
There is a retro rock groove to this number. It again has some funk in the mix. There is a dreamy quality to some of this. 
Just a Dream
This has a classy alternative pop feeling to it. It's echoey, a little trippy and so cool. There are sections that include some tasty distorted guitar. Those really lend some serious magic.
Take Your Time
Here we get  a particularly cool slow blues rocking tune. This is all class.
The Ride
Americana, blues rocking and alternative rock seem to merge on this. I dig the moody quality of the tune, but it's not as strong as some of the rest for me.
Let Go Of That Weight
An acoustic guitar arrangement brings this cut into being. It has a folk sound to it. This builds a bit to more of a mid-tempo folk rocker with plenty of Americana in the mix. I really dig the evocative guitar solo.
If I'm With You
A mellow roots vibe with plenty of country angles is in the driver's seat here. This is another flavor, and an interesting one at that.
Time to Move On
Folk and moody alternative music merge on this cut. For some reason, it also reminds me a little of the folkier side of early Pink Floyd, too. I love the guitar work on this, and the whole cut is very cool. There are definitely some country angles in some of the guitar work. This song is built on acoustic guitar, vocals and drums.
The Tide
Folk music along with a rock angle is on display here. This reminds me of the acoustic side of The Eagles to a large degree. It gets pretty involved and makes for a satisfying closer.
More CD Reviews
Metal/Prog Metal
Progressive Rock

   Creative Commons License
   This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License.

    © 2024 Music Street Journal                                                                           Site design and programming by Studio Fyra, Inc./