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Album Review: Jack River - 'Endless Summer'

Booping listeners right on the nose, Jack River’s Endless Summer is exactly what it sells itself to be.


In search of a summer album, I must recognize one incorporating the season in the title. With songs titled “Lie In The Sun,” “Endless Summer ft Genesis Owusu,” “Honey,” and “Paradise,” Holly Isabella Rankin wants to be as transparent as possible to her listeners; with ten songs running a little over thirty-three minutes, this album is meant to be played on road trips and at beaches.


History of the Title


The phrase “Endless Summer” conjures thoughts of the Bruce Brown film, its soundtrack, the 1974 Beach Boys album, Miley Cyrus’s March 2023 release [though its title is officially Endless Summer Vacation,] and the 2001 Fennesz album that brought him much critical praise. Using the same title, Jack River puts themselves into a difficult position; rise to the top with one of the greatest surfing documentaries, the boys of Summer, and the Rock Goddess herself, or take it in a completely different direction, like Fennesz.


The Jack River Version (Somewhere in the Middle)

“I wanna take you out into the sunshine, make it real life baby.”

From “Real Life” by Jack River


Starting with “Real Life” and Rankin’s opening lyrics, Jack River gives us a vibe, potent and empowering. The mood continues with “Lie In The Sun,” possibly the catchiest song on the album, handling conflict with the best possible attitude. “Endless Summer ft Genesis Owusu” slightly slows the momentum, light and airy, gently floating the listener along. Epic building choruses such as in “Lie To You” add to the feel while 90’s pop catchy rhythms like “Nothing Has Changed” keep listeners dancing. Musically playful, listeners may initially decide to look past the heavier lyrics, but after multiple plays, the layers will add to the appeal.


Final Thought: An Australian version of Taylor Swift, Rankin’s songs are catchy and easy to like. Although heavy is hidden in the lyrics, the music is upbeat and non-offensive. Expect to hear songs from this album all summer long.


The Real Final Thought: Since Jack River is from Australia, this should be considered a winter album. However, the timing is perfect for the Northern Hemisphere.


Favorite Songs: “Lie In The Sun,” “Honey,” and “Paradise”


Rating - 4.5/5 (Even if the world is burning down, we can enjoy moments.)

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