Band: Jack O’ The Clock

CD Title: Repetitions of the Old City II

Website: www.jackotheclock.com  

Label: Independent Release (2018)

Rating: Interesting and Challenging Avant-Folk-Progressive Rock


This is album number six from the band called Jack O’ The Clock and it’s a continuation theme wise of their previous outing and so its aptly titled Repetitions of the Old City II. They are a quintet that came together in the San Francisco area back in 2007 and when it comes to describing their music I’ll stick with what I said in my previous review. The music is a blending of experimental chamber music, American folk, Progressive Rock with dashes of a jazzy performance style here and there. They self-describe their music as Avant-folk/progressive, and in many respects that says it all. It’s as if, Gentle Giant, Pavlov’s Dog and Karda Estra were all put in a musical blender and what came out was the music of Jack O’ The Clock. As before even though there are electric instruments in the mix, it’s the many acoustic instruments that seem to come to the fore be they guitars, dulcimers, violins, saxophones, flutes, bassoon, whatever. The electric instruments do heighten the dynamic voice of the band by adding to the soft and delicate with their louder, harsher accents. The music itself is very intricate, even complex in spots playing off contrapuntal melody lines and call-and-response poly-rhythms. Musical lines will be soft, smooth and harmonic one moment before descending into near discordant chaos the next. But never fear the music rarely stays in in the dissonant world for long before changing directions into…well…something else. As with their previous release, this is music that should easily appeal to fans of a number of prog genres; symphonic, folk, Chamber and yes, Avant-prog. Challenging at times but totally satisfying the music of Jack O’The Clock has something for everyone.