D is for Django, the new full length record from Django Jones gets an “A” on its report card. This Atlanta, GA-based three-piece’s debut album offers a grouping of songs that listeners of any age will enjoy. For that matter, it’s a collection that will be enjoyed just as much in the classroom as it will be in the living room, bedroom or even in the car. That is thanks by and large to the fact that it covers so much ground across its twenty-seven total songs. From a light introduction to music theory in ‘Counterpoint’ and its accompanying skit to an update on ‘Them Bones’ to the absolutely beautiful trio of lullabies that close out the album, D is for Django offers so much for listeners and then some. It is one more wonderful addition to the already growing list of 2014’s top new children’s albums.
D is for Django offers so much for listeners to applaud across its twenty-seven total songs. It runs the gamut both musically and lyrically. This makes it just as enjoyable and useful in the classroom as in the living room, bedroom or even the car. One case proving that is the song’s light introduction to music theory that is ‘Counterpoint.’ The three-part harmonies in the chorus will instantly have listeners of any age singing along. And the poppy instrumental line could be used just as easily with any mainstream pop song. Lyrically speaking, the song does an impressive job of simplifying the concept of “Counterpoint” to audiences of all ages. There are adults that don’t know the meaning of the term. So this song will enlighten and entertain even those listeners. Bassist Nate Borofsky and vocalist Doris Muramatsu sing together in the song’s chorus, “It’s counterpoint when I sing here/And you sing your part loud and clear/It may seem like two different songs/But it turns out we’re singing along.” It explains with ease how two totally separate parts counter one another yet still make one whole song. That ease and equally entertaining musical side makes ‘Counterpoint’ a wonderful addition to D is for Django whether as part of a music lesson or as just one part of the whole that is the album.
‘Counterpoint’ is a wonderful addition to the debut album from Django Jones. That is because of its educational and entertainment value combined. Another addition to the trio’s new album that listeners of all ages will appreciate is ‘Bones.’ ‘Bones’, it could be argued, is an update of sorts to the old song ‘Them Bones.’ It takes a direct cue from the older of the two songs, pointing out even more bones of the body. Those bones include the scapula, clavical, tibia, fibula, funny bone and much more. As is the case with ‘Counterpoint’, there are just as many adults that would learn a thing or two from this song as there are younger listeners. They might not openly admit it, but many adults don’t even know the names of certain bones in the body. So in keeping with this understanding, this song becomes all the more important an addition to the group’s new record. It’s one more song that makes the record as a whole just as enjoyable for young ears as for those that are more experienced.
Both ‘Bones’ and ‘Counterpoint’ prove to be equally impressive and important additions to Django Jones’ debut LP. Both songs exhibit educational and entertainment value for listeners of all ages thanks to their mix of music and lyrics. The final trio of lullabies that flesh out the album collectively show just as much value for listeners. That is because each song exhibits a different musical style all while creating a full sense of calm and security. They are collectively a complete departure from everything else on this record. ‘Love You Like I Do’ will bring tears to any listener’s eyes. Even this critic must admit to this happening in listening to this piece. Being a parent of a young infant/toddler, it becomes all the more emotional. The dual vocals of Doris Muramatsu and Nate Borofsky conjure images of two parents singing to their child as they sing, “When that road stretches too long/I will smile and sing another song/Birds take flight/protecting you from high/It’s all right/Cause I will dry your eyes/Now the time has come to rest/No need to worry/You’ve always done your best/I have seen the wonders that are you/Thanks for the chance to love you like I do.”
‘Lullabies’ is a perfect follow-up to ‘Love You Like I Do.’ This song is just as gentle and moving as the prior piece. The light, almost Appalachian feel created by Muramatsu’s work on the mandolin is to thank for that Making the song even more moving is the addition of what sounds like an organ of sorts in the background. That dual musical backing set against Borofsky’s singing will touch any listener just as much as ‘Love You Like I Do.’ If this song doesn’t tug at listeners’ heart strings, then the album’s simple closer definitely will.
Django Jones could not have closed out D is for Django in better fashion than ‘Long Time Sun.’ This song is a direct contrast to the album’s opener,’All That I See.’ What’s more it’s the simplest song on the entire album. Muramatsu, Borofsky, and JJ Jones sing in unison in this song, “May the long time sun shine upon you/All love surround you/And the pure light within you/Guide your way on.” The harmonies in this song are incredible. And set against the sound of spring peepers, those harmonies have even more impact. They make the song even more beautiful and moving. That’s because somehow, the two elements together actually heighten the song’s sense of simplicity, thus making the song all the more wonderful addition to the album. It’s one of the highest of highs on this album. Though, it’s just one of many high points throughout the record’s twenty-seven total tracks. Listeners will each find their own favorite moments in listening to the album when they pre-order it now. D is for Django can be pre-ordered now via the band’s official website, http:// http://djangojonesband.com/music/.
Along with pre-ordering the band’s new album, audiences can keep up with any potential live dates and more from Django Jones on the band’s official website and its official Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/djangojonesband. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.