Album Review: Jarvis – Through It All (Winner NMF Ep 45)

If you’re a frequent voter on NewMusicFriday here at ETTG, you’ve definitely heard Jarvis. This classy pop act reminds us all that good pop music is not dead. In this versatile four song EP, we get a chance to hear a quality vocalist who calls himself… Jarvis.

“Through It All,” the title track, shows off some really nice clean jazz guitar lines. The vocal is a mild tenor that soars but doesn’t sting. When you get into the groove of the track, you can’t help but feel yourself swaying slow and easy. The lyrics are, at their heart, inherently romantic. It’s realistic, but has that 70s R&B quality to them that is sure to make a lot of fans.

“Brokenhearted” is the track that won Jarvis this review and you can hear why the people voted for him. The guitar sounds impeccable. The easy comparison here is John Mayer, but you may hear some other soulful guitar influences too. Of course with a name like brokenhearted you have to appreciate that it’s actually a blues song. Jarvis really taps into something deep on this one and anyone who has ever felt a moment of heartache will do that “amen brother” tap to the chest on this one.

The final two tracks “Heart of Mine” and “Free Advice” are both enjoyable as well. “Heart of Mine” has an uptempo style that really keeps moving. It’s more of a funky tune. When the backing vocals and horns come in, you know Jarvis went all in with this one. Something about it reminds me of New Orleans even though Jarvis is LA-via-Chitown. “Free Advice” has a ton of style. I love the way the harmonies and the guitar work so well together. Again I’ll bring in the NOLA connection – I could picture Davis on Treme spinning this on his show. It just has a groove that means something to me.

This is an album that’s felt as much as heard. It’s hard to put into words how the songs get into your soul, but they just do. There’s a legitimate soulful element to the music. I wouldn’t call it purely soul, blues, or R&B, but it’s a wonderfully exciting blending of those genres. I’m sure Jarvis lights up the club when he plays live.

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