Jet Lag Gemini – Fire the Cannons
Release Date: January 22, 2008
Record Label: Doghouse Records
Summer's coming early this year. Jet Lag Gemini's debut full-length for Doghouse Records, Fire the Cannons, is a (winter-released) summer-ready pop-punk record for both the lovers and the haters. The album is produced by Jon Kaplan, who also produced The Jonas Brothers' album and The Damnwells' Air Stereo, the latter admittedly a personal favorite of the last couple of years. Jet Lag Gemini seem intent on creating the most lush soundscapes they can put behind catchy, hook-filled pop-punk, and as awkward as that might sound, it works like a dream.
“Run This City” is the lead single as well as the album's opener, a classically-tinged rocker fueled by aggression and a bit of bravado. “Doctor, Please!” is a bit more focused and panders to the sing-along crowd. The drum work is on Fire the Cannons is surprisingly sharp. It doesn't dominate any particular track, instead leaving that job to the unexpectedly unique and often warbling riffs, but the drumming fantastically complements the music. A perfect example would be on both “Bad Apples” and “Bittersweet,” the latter which will be a popular track. Two dazzling intros on “Fit to Be Tied” and “Just Say How” secure their place as standout songs on this very surprising disc, as well.
The problem as you course through the middle and second half of the album is that the vocals start to grate just a bit, and the lyrics could use a bit more work so the songs stand out a bit more from each other. It's nothing too harsh, but if you need to point out any flaws in the album, the vocals are by far the easiest target. “Keep This with You” is the only true ballad on the album, and a few listens seem to point to Jet Lag Gemini needing to work on their slow songs. Frankly, it's slow and very uninteresting. The sound of Misha Safonov's voice clashes more with the music the louder he sings, and we get a forgettable result.
Jet Lag Gemini's thick riffs and solid vocals will bring a breath of fresh air to your pop-punk slate in 2008. Fire the Cannons is an album with enough focus for the mainstream crowd and more than enough showmanship for anyone looking for some additional entertainment blasting from their iPod headphones. Jon Kaplan has done a stellar job of helping the band record a dominant pop-punk album that challenges anything released in the genre over the last few years. Put down your All Time Low posters; stop waiting anxiously for the news Cute album to come out; and instead go seek out Doghouse's next big hit—Jet Lag Gemini.
This album was a nice surprise. "Fit to be Tied" is an incredible song. For people looking for good pop-punk that tips the scales a little more towards the punk side will dig this. Some parts of it remind me of Fenix Tx or The Movielife.
Its great to hear that Jet Lag is putting out their album finally. From what I have heard on the album, the music is better than anything they have released yet. The band truely shows their musicianship, their character, but still show they know how to have a good time. This is definately the album that I am looking forward to this year.