We are the band called JOBS, and sometimes that feels like a big responsibility. JOBS believes that this band is our job, and it is the band’s job to provide an experience that makes you forget your job, and hopefully gets you to look at the way things are with an eye towards how things could be.
The original members of JOBS – drummer Max Jaffe, bassist Rob Lundberg, and guitarist David Scanlon – started the project (under the name “killer BOB”) in a tiny closet in Manhattan when they were music students (yes, this is music made by music students, but don’t let that scare you away), and 10 years later, they continue to devise new ways of maintaining their creative vitality.
The music on their forthcoming record, “Log On For The Free Chance To Log On For Free”, is the result of changes to their environment and lineup. To prepare for this record, JOBS rented a small two-bedroom bungalow in Santa Fe for a week. There is a vastness and an openness to the environment there that is nowhere to be found in New York, and the band took full advantage of that, feeling the space and freedom to run with their craziest ideas. Long unstructured days of writing and rehearsing were broken up by spontaneous hikes in the Galisteo Basin. Food was prepared together. Energy flowed with ease. A record of new material was essentially complete by the end of the week.
After completing the recordings in a communal house studio in Woodstock (The Isokon), JOBS had one final crucial step, which was to formally bring longtime friend and occasional member Jessica Pavone into the band. She brings her own highly-developed musical personality to the table, as well as years of immeasurable experience as a luminary of the New York avant-garde. Her viola playing and one of her compositions (“Held Up Fairly”) make its debut with JOBS on this record. On the title of the record, “Log On For The Free Chance To Log On For Free”, it can easily be heard as coming from the voice of a corporation which, for many, is the keeper of their job. “Logging in… is a ploy to acquire information. ‘Log on for the free chance to log on for free’ is a catch-22. It is a corporation exploiting someone and, in return, giving them what they already had,” says Lundberg. Jaffe adds, “there are corporations that we have socially agreed to collaborate with. Our information and the content that we create is monetized and in exchange we are given a community that we already had.”
The energy that is bottled and distilled in this record is multitudinous, with moments of tensile contemplation leading to teary-eyed euphoria, irreverent humor morphing into inchoate rage, all-out metallic assaults paired with spacious group meditations, and all guided by a spirit of joyful experimentalism. Despite the musical risk-taking found on the record, the concept of “groove” is essential to JOBS’ music. Scanlon says “I do not have a clear definition for ‘groove’; however, a collectively agreed upon pulse seems crucial to its existence”. One can hear the influence of the communal living and open spaces that forged these songs in the many collective and risky agreements JOBS makes throughout the record.