(Loud Baby Sounds) The eponymous debut from Jo RB Jones, the Athens-based four-piece indie rock band named for lead singer and guitarist Rebecca Jones, is a brief, seven-track collection of endearing pop songs centered around the theme of stumbling into adulthood.
Jones’ lyrics are largely about taking strength from loved ones and providing it for them in return. The wonderful “Frolic (Ur the One)” is an unabashed love ballad dedicated to the singer’s longtime partner (and band guitarist), Michael Wright. On album closer “Arrows,” Jones analogizes giving emotional support with being a literal human shield and questions how long someone can hold up someone else in the face of adversity.
The music, played by Jones, Wright, bassist Henry Barbe and Glenn Reece on drums (with a brief appearance by John Fernandes on violin), is mostly simple, with hints of experimentation and a mid-‘90s flair that’s in line with the Dinosaur Jr.-esque nature of related local projects like Velocirapture and The Hernies. Jones’ vocal delivery is sincere throughout, adding an emotional weight that the band otherwise lacks. Jo RB Jones is a solid, often moving debut, a sign of good things to come.