The Westborough News

The Westborough News

Jumblies jump into music scene
Westborough’s Katherine Park Deakin provides the vocals

By Dave McGrath
SPECIAL TO THE NEWS


The Boston-based band The Jumblies, featuring singer Katherine Deakin, has just finished producing a four-song album titled “Catch It If You Can.”


REVIEW


Originally formed in 1999 by guitarist Mark Heng, I had the pleasure of seeing The Jumblies play last December when they opened for Focusin, yet another local band with a Westborough native: guitarist Glen Goland. To be honest, I was not really looking forward to seeing The Jumblies. When opening bands are on, I am usually counting the minutes and number of songs, wondering when the band I really want to see will come on. The Jumblies dismissed any notion I had about lame opening acts.


From the get-go, The Jumblies impressed everyone in the audience. The band features Deakin on vocals and harmonica; Heng on guitar and vocals; Mike “Goss” Gossweiler on drums, Clara Kebabian on violin; Mark Eskandar on bass; Elizabeth Bell on the Yamaha djx-II sampler and vocals; and Carlos Homs on keyboard. Their unique combination of guitar, bass, drums, keyboard, and violin created a sound unlike most bands.


Deakin’s voice filled the room with a piercing passion and, like the rest of the band, didn’t miss a note. The Jumblies’ wide range of influences includes The Smiths, The Cure, My Bloody Valentine, Mazzy Star, Janis Joplin, Lou Reed, ’60s pop and dub reggae. When mixed together, the music was thoroughly enjoyable and applauded by all in the crowded room.


What is apparent when seeing The Jumblies play and meeting Deakin is her passion for music. You can tell she means it when she hits her notes. When she talks about music there’s a look of happiness in her eyes that lets you know it’s her calling in life.


I asked her when she first knew music was for her, and her reply was happily, honestly, and proudly: “as long as I can remember.”


However, she also said it was her music classes in the Westborough Public Schools that really brought the musician inside her out. She credits Marilyn Samuelson for providing her a strong musical foundation, and is thankful to every music teacher and person who has helped foster her innate love and talent for music. The list includes: Samuelson, Richard Hagar, David Seaman, William Pappazisis, the Westborough Music Parents Association; and people I’m sure will be in Deakin’s first awards speech.


The Jumblies new album “Catch It If You Can,” has songs sung by both Deakin and Heng and was written collaboratively by The Jumblies. What is great is that the four songs bridge into each other and feed off each other. The first song “No Silence,” starts with drums, guitar and then Deakin’s searing vocals hitting notes most of us could only pray to hit, a characteristic of every Jumblies song she sings.


The second song, “Morningrise,” has more of a gloomy tone (in my book, sad songs are the best_ and laid-back pace, and ahs unbelievable instrumental fills throughout. A quick third instrumental “Iadhadh” leads into the fourth song, “Catch It If You Can,” which is sung by Heng. It’s more of a straight-out hard rock song that does well to finish off the encapsulation of the newest Jumblies incarnation.


when I first saw the Jumblies open for Focusin, I had no idea who Deakin was or that she was from Westborough. I thought it was a strange coincidence that two bands playing together had to “native musicians.” While Focusin is still rocking the local music scene and just released their first full-length CD March 31 at the Middle East in Cambridge, Deakin introduced me to Cold Duck Complex, a band based in western Massachusetts that has yet another Westborough native: keyboardist Jeff D’Antona.


With a new album, rehearsals, ties to local musicians and outright love of music, The Jumblies have only one key ingredient remaining: setting up more gigs. Their album has impressed many local club owners, as The Jumblies already have dates set for their next shows, and more coming in. The band headlined at PAs Lounge in Somerville last week. The CD release party will be at the Kirkland Cafe in Somerville on April 8, followed by performances at the Midway Cafe in Jamaica Plain on April 30; and taping a performance before a live audience on May 14 for cable television in Wrentham.


Oh, and in case there are any Austin Powers fans out there, the Jumblies did not get their name from the movie. They are named after the Edward Lear poem titled, you guessed it, “The Jumblies.”


For more information about the three bands, check out www.thejumblies.com, www.focusinmusic.com, or www.coldduckcomplex.com.


(Dave McGrath is a Westborough native.)


McGrath, David. “Jumblies Jump Into Music Scene.” The Westborough News 1 April 2005. Print.