The waves on the River Mersey are thunderous this time of year. The tide crashing against the shore at a ferocious rate with no sign of a white flag. It’s only fitting perhaps that our resident “Mersey surfers” The Jagz return with a second EP as they plan an assault on the music scene. Four new tracks that showcase the variation and quality of The Jagz as they strut onto your playlist and make the room stand up and listen with intent.

Cathedral Dreams is the opener as we take to the water. Someone clock us in. The strings and keyboard immediately create a melody we haven’t heard thus far in previous Jagz tracks. The tempo is the quickest to date as the Wirral five-piece present their ‘poppy’ side if you like. It sounds very early Coral and the structure of this number is so impressive with the tempo always in control. The beat slows towards the closing salvo as The Jagz have us in the palm of their proverbial hand, leading us into a guitar and keyboard inspired instrumental before the tempo lifts again for the chorus to ring out in it’s catchy, endearing manner. A nifty start to proceedings.

Good Times is up next and is perhaps the most crowd-pleasing track on the EP. You can’t help but raise a smile as we hear poignant lyrics throughout of fruitful ventures and dream chasing, encapsulated in a groove that will brighten the darkest of days. The Jagz described this EP as being “based on the notion that life should be about peace, love and good times. Laugh at the bullshit and keep rolling on”. The relevance of this message is stark in this uplifting and warming number. From the smiling string arrangements, upbeat vocals and blissful beat, there really are no worries to be found. 

We approach the second half of the EP and The Jagz present a masterpiece. Life Keeps Rollin On is an exhibition to present the classy qualities that the Wirral Melody Makers © possess. This track airs on the easy listening, Mac DeMarco side but with a sound shot from outer space. It’s slow and heavy nature allows front man Paddy Cross to flaunt his vocal prowess upon the listener. The entrancing and addictive beat ensures that we can delve into the meaning and absorb classy lyrics throughout such as the notion that “one broken love song don’t mean the next one will not last”. Stripped back songs can sometimes be the most effective for their relativity and this idea is strengthened by the result of this intoxicating work of art. 

Like all good things, sadly we must be drawn to a conclusion. The Jagz see us out with a five minute, thirty-five second outro that explores their psychedelic side. This soundbite is very Pink Floyd which can never be a bad thing. Again, the structure of the track is on point. The bass prominent and takes centre stage dictating tempo and pace beautifully throughout almost teasing the listener with the alterations in pace. On the four minute, thirty second mark, we think we are all out only for the guitars and drums to step up at their most ferocious rate to ensure we can dance the night away. The decision to sign out in this fashion shows the bravery of the band. They want to explore both metaphorically and in real time, striving to be different. Willing to take chances and eager to impress, The Jagz most certainly manage this.

Inherently, there’s no escaping the message and vibe that this EP is an exploration of the feeling. The importance of chasing the dream and rolling with the punches during testing times. My feeling here is one of pride. I’m proud that The Jagz are mine and yours. I’m further dignified that they’re theirs and everyone else’s. Analysis is wonderful and technicality is admirable. Never sidestep the feeling though. Your heart pumping right down your sleeve. It’s why you write love songs. 

The Jagz ‘Cathedral Dreams’ is available to stream on all platforms now.

To find out more about The Jagz visit https://www.facebook.com/jagzjagzjagz/

Jamie Hankin