The second studio effort from New Jersey born power pop band The Paper Jets comes in the form of a five track EP entitled Almost Nine. The trio set out to recreate the magic of their debut full length studio album We Are All Strange Friends, and even included recordings of fan favorites “Elizabeth Distressed” and “Of An Extrovert”.
The frenetic pace of openers “Elizabeth Distressed” and “Brand New Shoes” officially kicks off the EP, and it is here that I am formally introduced to the band. Defined by catchy riffs, strong power chords, and soulful vocals, it is evident they take care to foster a ‘feel good’ environment. The light-hearted nature of these tracks does not come at the expense of technical work as the instrumentation does not insist too heavily upon itself.
The EP shines in spots such as the “Jo Don’t Let Me”, a softly sung power ballad which breaks the uniformity of the previous tracks. It is here that vocalist Brian E. is given the platform to show off his captivating voice and versatile range. Coming across as though it were straight from a movie, this track proved to be their best effort.
Despite minor instances of repetition leading to segments of monotony The Paper Jets successfully crafted a record that is ultimately enjoyable. While its generally ‘vintage’ feeling atmosphere has high potential to be lost on today’s consumers that same criticism is also its greatest appeal, presenting a soundscape that is quite different from the dullness clogging modern music.