The opening line of this album made me laugh out loud. From that point on Bipolar Diversions by England’s Jackdaw4 delivers so many superbly tongue in cheek moments throughout this joyful album that it will have you recommending it to total strangers at the bus stop. I have heard it described as a ‘breath of fresh air’, ‘irresistible’, ‘gleeful and robust.’ Yes, it is all of those things but for me it plugs a huge gaping hole that has existed in the music world of late. It brings the sun out – amuses – mesmerizes and shines with a freshness that is wonderfully done.
Jackdaw4 is built around the song writing talent that is Willie Downing. He shares those credits with others across an album of totally memorable spirit and adventure. As I say from the first line of the first track I was hooked and by the time “Frobisher’s Last Stand” came in I was a convert. There is a terrible danger when reviewing albums and that is the curse of repetition. How on earth can you review this and sound as fresh as the music itself? Answer: you can’t, well I can’t at least. So what you’ll get is an attempt to put into a bottle the incredible range of music contained within this CD.
Bipolar Diversions has the quirkiness of Ray Davies, all the melodic brilliance of The Beatles, all the harmony of Brian Wilson and all the pop-ability of, let’s say, 10cc – all rolled into one joyous party of sound. This CD can get right under your skin and is the sort of thing you need to play for inspiration just prior to meeting your boss for your yearly appraisal. Don’t expect to be still employed when you come out, but rest assured you WILL feel better.