JEFFREY NOVAK: One of a Kind: 7”

Sep 23, 2009

Similar to his Memphis neighbor Jay Reatard, Novak has a furious and steady output of records, also moving from a more harsh noise to cleaner poppy work. I didn’t want to describe it as “growing” because Novak’s early fuzz sound as a one-man destruction crew is still great and accomplished. He is just doing a different type of music now. I never get hung up on someone not sounding exactly the same for fifty albums, provided what they are doing is good. As the OMB, Novak tore it up with the precision timing of vicious, noisy garage punk on a full-length and tons of 7”s in a short time, moving on to the three-piece Rat Traps, which slowed down to punk before hitting breakneck speed on their third 7”. Next came Cheap Time, which seems to be a band concurrent to his solo releases, both embracing a sort of post-Bowie and T. Rex sound—I’m sure I’m missing much better, more obscure references/influences. While Cheap Time is more poppy, the solo work on his recent full-length and this 7” is more slow and dreamy, some piano mixed in, with the pedals on but not distorted. It’s catchy, it’s sweet and melodic, and probably more popular in Brooklyn and Silverlake than the early, brutal stuff. All in all, Novak is someone to always listen to.

 –mike (Sweet Rot)