I remember really looking forward to the One The Juggler album before it came out. I know that there had been a single of a weird slow acoustic-based song called “Django’s Coming” that was pretty good, and for some reason — I think it’s because we at KFSR had a good relationship with the college music rep from RCA records who had gotten us a bunch of copies of New Sensations — we were assured that their debut album, Nearly a Sin, was full of treasures.
:: NARRATOR VOICE :: It wasn’t.
Or at least I didn’t think so: most of the album was cluttered and overproduced, and they didn’t really provide the songs to get around the production. Or maybe it was because they used up their entire allotment of hooks on the opening track, “Enjoy Yourself.”
Fading in with gated snarebeats like it had been out there forever and it had finally decided to sidle by us for a bit, “Enjoy Yourself” almost immediately launches into a big hooky riff than turns into a solo which climbs higher and higher, aided and abetted by handclaps(!), ahhhhhhhhhhh backing vocals and a cool bass run.
This goes on for a nearly a minute before lead singer Rokko even opens his mouth to sing the one and only verse:
Been a long time, made lots of noise
But there ain’t much time for some of you boys
Been a long time, you’ll be on the shelf
Go and get your goodies and enjoy yourself
En-en-en-en-en-en-en enjoy yourself
Oh yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah
And then, “Enjoy Yourself” just shuts down after 1:35 of utter gloriousness, because clearly it was just meant to be a table setter, bringing you into their world, and setting you up for the goodies to come. Only there really weren’t any more goodies to come: there wasn’t even another moment on the album that even remotely came close to the “WHOOO!” at the end of that verse.
Almost like even they knew they’d shot their wad on the first track. Which of course they didn’t know, because Nearly a Sin went on for nearly 50 minutes longer and never even came close to matching its opening salvo.
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