by Stephen Veith (@quakeroats91)
Maryland based songwriter David Haynes, who goes beneath the moniker Jim Shorts, has been busy. In the last six years alone, Jim Shorts has released 43 DIY/lo-fi albums. For his 44th, Halo Repair, he’s going to the big time, working in a hi-fi recording studio - it’s like when Bob Dylan went electric, minus the backlash. Working with producer Jamal Ruhe (Titus Andronicus, Built to Spill, Diarrhea Planet), Jim Shorts looks to combine their tried and true lo-fi format with the accessibility and riffage of more produced modern rock groups.
Seemingly buried nostalgia is unearthed in the video for “The Tree of Life”. As Jim Shorts play Halo, Guitar Hero, Hungry Hungry Hippos, pick out VHS’, eat Chinese food and what appear to be meatballs, they seem content and satisfied. At the same time they also shred a head bopping slice of fuzz-pop. The lyrics are somewhat of an homage to their home state of Maryland, Haynes sings, “The Tree of Life could be in Maryland, for all I know or care/Jesus might live in Frederick, with too much love to share.” There is a very clear influence of Built to Spill with both the instrumentation and the vocals, but the track does not appear stale whatsoever, with Haynes bringing a more pop oriented tight delivery. I’m intrigued to both investigate the back catalog as well as Jim Shorts' new record, with this song as a guide, my future listens will be enjoyable for certain.
Halo Repair is being self-released on April 6th