Jack Oblivian – Rat City (CD)

Jack Yarber has pretty much done it all. Ey has spent tours in The Compulsive Gamblers, Jack O and the Tennessee Tearjerkers and The Oblivians. Rat City drops all the extra musicians and hangers-on and showcases Oblivian at eir most honest. What results with Rat City is a tremendously touching and emotionally intense album, with tracks that run the range of styles and feelings that listeners have came to expect from Yarber’s varied acts.

Rat City begins with a self-titled effort htat acts in a narrative fashion. With this track, Jack is able to introduce eirself to listeners. Long-term fans would do well to focus on this track, which is considerably different in tone than any other track Oblivian has committed to disc. After this “how do you do”, Oblivian is able to let eir wings unfurl with the one-two punch of Mass Confusion and Old Folks Boogie. Of the two, Old Folks Boogie is the stronger – it has a timeless quality to it that will reach a huge swath of fans, no matter what music that they may like.

It is this wide-open feel that makes Rat City such a memorable album – Moses and Me exists at the intersection between traditional and current perfectly. This means that, dependent on the context that one places upon the track, the overall meaning of this cut will change. As a result, it behooves listeners to give Rat City a number of listens before putting it down. There are different nuances and bits and pieces hidden in the periphery, hidden Easter eggs that will make one’s enjoyment of the album that much more. Check it out.

Top Tracks: Old Folks Boogie, Girl With The Bruises

Rating: 8.6/10

Jack Oblivian – Rat City (CD) / 2011 Fat Possum / 12 Tracks / http://www.fatpossum.com / http://www.facebook.com/jackoblivian

Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / neufutur.com since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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