This review is courtesy of Kerri McClinton and Kaeleigh Grace via Oklahoma Reviews.
The road to success is never a straight line. For Jericho Woods, this is no exception. Josh Mitcham and Paul Priest, the band’s founding members, are cousins. Influenced by a musical family of guitar players and singers, Josh recalled in an interview with Oklahoma Reviews’ Kaeleigh Grace, how as kids, their weekends were spent playing bluegrass on the porch. In fact, Paul started out playing bluegrass with acts like Bobby Osborne, and continued in that vein for more than a decade.
They finally decided to team up in 2013 and toured throughout the Southeastern and Midwestern United States. When all their work came to fruition in 2017, with their single “Better Now” getting them attention from CMT, GAC, and Rolling Stone Country alike, they didn’t expect what happened next. The seemingly straight path they had been on took a sharp turn.
They lost a drummer and a lead guitar player; leaving them with no label, no manager, and no band. But they started the long trek back to the path they had been on and rebuilt from the ground up. With new songs and new musicians to help play and record those songs, they were back to “give folks the best experience” they could offer with their “independent spirit and Kentucky pride.”
“Better Now” was their last success, but it doesn’t take much of a listen to “One Perfect Sound” to see that Jericho Woods has found a new success in “trying to find the sound” that defined them. They’ve been able to stay on their family farms in Kentucky and raise their kids there, which has helped them stay grounded, and true to themselves and their music. Jericho Woods is truly ‘better now’ than they’ve ever been, and “One Perfect Sound” is the perfect testimony to that end.
A lovers’ serenade, “Firefly” opens with a spacey steel guitar and a grounding bass drum kick: Both musical imagery for the starry night and the cool grass on bare feet that we associate with our favorite summer nights. Smith Curry’s pining steel continues throughout, as our lovers dance like fireflies to the drum beat laid down at the outset. The band comes in and fills those little nooks of the song with melody, as the sounds of frogs, crickets and birds fill every nook of summer’s own nighttime song. Musically, “Firefly” is the epitome of the carefully crafted carelessness of summertime; laid-back, yet still upbeat and melodic. If you close your eyes when you listen to “Firefly”, and you’re not picturing your favorite summer moments, you’re listening wrong.
“Monday Morning Cigarette” opens with a driving fiddle that later in the song almost seems to cry. If that’s not resonant of the grindstone that starts on Monday mornings and includes the occasional tears or a ‘why me?’, then I don’t know what is. Everyone can relate to some version of a “Monday Morning Cigarette;” the anti-climactic, non-milestone that triggers that back to work reflex. Like Sisyphus and the boulder, we’ve gotta do it all over again. Every one of those cigarettes is part of a cycle that never ends, and that continuation ultimately means that our story teller hasn’t made it yet, and honestly, isn’t sure that he ever will. It’s an authentic ode to all the hard-working folks of the world who commute and work long days to take care of a family or to simply just get by.
The title track, “One Perfect Sound,” is the story of the sacrifices and struggles of the artist who keeps telling his story because doing so keeps himself alive: the understanding wife at home alone, the kids growing up while he’s gone, the hard road that calls with long nights away; all with the hopes that his words eventually fall on ears of the listening variety, instead of deaf ones. They keep it all up day after day, through the neon of the lights and the white lines of the highway, for that ‘one bolt of lightning’ that will mean that he’s found that one perfect sound and their struggles will be over. Josh hopes this song is the one you, as the listener, identify with most. Don’t give up on who you are authentically in the name of success.
On that note, let’s have a chat about something near and dear to the heart of Jericho Woods. When you find a band, a song, an album you love: SUPPORT IT. Digital downloads and plays are great for us as an audience, but buying tickets to a show and hitting up that merch table or visiting the artists’ website and ordering a CD or vinyl, well, it keeps the whole shebang running, so to speak. It covers recording costs, pays band members, or puts gas in the van to literally keep things running. It’s vital to the continued health of the bands and artists we love, and that in turn is vital to us, as the fans who love the music. When “One Perfect Sound” releases on May 3, 2019, Oaks Day in Kentucky, you can find it for purchase on their website (www.jerichowoodsband.com) or at the merch table. They have dates scheduled all over Kentucky well into September, including an official Album Release Party at Country Bow Brewing in Georgetown on May 25th.
Go Pre-Order One Perfect Sound;
Like and Follow Jericho Woods;