If values like edginess, innovation and twisted creativity get your musical juices flowing, one need look no further than Dublin natives Jack and the Darlings One’s and their new single “Great and Terrible End”. A profound fusion of scat jazz and folk metal, Jack and the Darling Ones press into bold new realms of dingy metal with their first recorded single. Heavy lyrics and a melancholy rhythm set the tone for the track backlit by a curious sense of fun and musical exploration. Listening to “Great and Terrible End” projects an aura of courageous nonconformity. As their first produced single, “Great and Terrible End” sets a bold trajectory for Jack and the Darling Ones which will no doubt appeal to the Mad Hatter inside sludge and dark metal fans the world over. Instrumentally the track is a curious and captivating combination of hair-prickling piano chords and hypnotic guitar riffs that create the air of a carnival haunted house. The combination is an audible rainy day for the sicko-pluviophiles of the world. A saloon-esque piano solo dollops a strange cherry on top of this Tim Burton inspired musical sundae. Adding further to the twisted audible stew are the vocals of front man Ciaran Hoyne. Gloomy lyrics and a broad array of vocal manifestations combine in an atmosphere of mildly confusing despair; in the most pleasurable sense, of course. The pairing of truly unique vocals and the instrumental smog that seems to encompass genres from folk to funk give “Great and Terrible End” a strangely satisfying and creative nature that I haven’t quite heard before but certainly plan on hearing more of. To sum it up neatly; the track feels new and authentic yet distantly familiar. The slightly unsettling but strangely satisfying nature of “Great and Terrible End” feels analogous to and indie-horror film; somewhat of a guilty pleasure that many of us only indulge in when no one else is looking. Like a beloved, dingy backpack that you’ve had for 8 years and have a strange, slightly obscene fondness for. If you grew up watching movies like The Nightmare Before Christmas or The Neverending Story, this band will be right up your alley. With new dates being booked in Ireland and the U.K., Jack and the Darling Ones will be increasingly present on the new band radar.
William Desrochers - WAIL Music Magazine