Jupiter in Velvet - In2 the Arms of Love
It’s virtually impossible to not be excited about this album and music. Jupiter in Velvet delivers an action packed sixth release entitled In2 the Arms of Love and it’s the same formula that’s made his previous albums stand out refined just a little more than before. No one should mistake this for implying a creative rut. It is clear, instead, that Jupiter in Velvet raises the bar for himself with each successive release – challenging himself to dispatch his idiosyncratic material in a manner that proves compelling each time out. It certainly doesn’t hurt that Jupiter has a message crossing national and personal borders with its universal themes of love and togetherness. This isn’t a performer mired in self-pity and morbid self reflection. Jupiter in Velvet, instead, is connected with joy and life on every song. It makes for one of 2017’s greatest listening experiences to date.
Title tracks don’t always start albums and it’s worth noting it when they do. “In2 the Arms of Love” has an affirmative rush carrying listeners along from the first. Much of Jupiter in Velvet’s material has an upbeat attitude and few songs embody that better than this number. The second song on the album “’Till the End of the World” has a physical presence few other songs on In2 the Arms of Love possess. The guitar playing sounds like it is too Neanderthal, too simplistic to work but it’s precisely the reason why this song is so effective. The drumming matches its tribal energies and the two sonic elements, in tandem, become the song’s defining musical moments. “How It’s Gonna Be” has a distinctly different air thanks to its use of acoustic instruments, but electric guitar makes its presence felt here in a much more artful fashion. “Supercharged” does an one hundred eighty degree turn from the aforementioned song into some manic guitar pop with a restless rock and roll spirit thrashing away deep within. It really hits its stride with the chorus and Jupiter in Velvet proves capable of matching the song’s energy without a single lull in his performance.
The album’s second half concerns itself less with guitar and more with pop overtones. Few songs make this clearer than the track “Nowhere 2 Run”. The high point of the song is another fine chorus that rouses listener’s spirits. Other tracks in the album’s second half have a more broad based musical approach that doesn’t favor the guitar but, rather, incorporates it with the overall modern sound. The electronic, rock, and pop elements never sound like they are working at cross purposes. “Mars Ain’t That Far” leans more towards the rock side of the spectrum, but there’s some inventive keyboard work enlivening the song and sweetening its punky edge. “Bang On” is one of the most melodically strong songs on the album while still retaining enough guitar firepower to give the track gravitas. Jupiter in Velvet’s In2 the Arms of Love has musical unity and coherence we rarely hear these days and it’s without a doubt born from the artist’s total confidence in his aims. He succeeds here in a big way.