Solo Experimentalism

Juffage is the work of one man, Jeff T. Smith, a multi-instrumental solo artist, his approach on this record is experimental, dreamy, atmospheric and infused with a pop sensibility at its off kilter core. "Semicircle" has such a depth of sound that it's hard to believe it's a solo record, the album opens with the impressive and spine-tingling strains of 'Semicircle' on which, straight away, comparisons to Radiohead and Bon Iver rear their heads, it's bound to happen, but this doesn't mean that Juffage isn't a uniquely individual sound, because it most certainly is: soaked in fuzzy distortion and moodily atmospheric with dreamy layers, electro bleeps and sweet vocals often wrapped up in lovely melodies this is, unexpectedly for something so off kilter, a very easy and enjoyable album.

At both ends of the spectrum we have, (as well as the aforementioned title track and dreamy opener), the lovely 'HHV' which is light, floaty and charming with string sounds, '120/240' the stark electro second track which is like something from the soundtrack to a retro futuristic film. 'Small Fires' is a manic exercise in off kilter, with awkward rhythms at its core, but vocally it's melodic and addictive, quite an intoxicating combination and 'Under Fanblades' discordant guitar and trumpet sounds are counteracted by a warm tune. The only slightly off moment on the album is the album closer 'Drone II' it shakes you out of the moment as it is more of a straight forward oddity, just (not particularly engaging) vocal samples and little noises in the background with none of the melody or charm of the rest. Other than this dip the record is a real pleasure; inventive, full of quirky, interesting moments and melodic warmth; truly accessible experimentalism.