JC Brooks (from the album The Neon Jungle)
The backdrop for JC Brooks in the creation of The Neon Jungle, his recent release, was a specific time and place. The Neon Jungle, as JC Brooks sees it, is ‘1987, you're going out on a Friday night and you're ready to lose yourself in the city, anticipating this unbelievable time and surfing the radio and stopping on whatever's gonna keep that tingle flowing through your body’. The music of JC Brooks has always been a clear intention. His first foray into music with JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound had the goal of mixing Punk and Soul. With a new six-piece collective operating under the group name of JC Brooks, Soul is still the ship that holds the band as it continues to blend bloodlines into the genre, bending Rock’n’Roll beats, the flow of Funk, and a raw edge of Punk into The Neon Jungle.
Though the band operates under the name of the man behind the microphone, JC Brooks, the process is more unified for The Neon Jungle. The recording of The Neon Jungle happened over the course of eighteen months, JC looking back at its beginnings recalling that ‘one of the first things put into play with this new band was we wanted it to be a more wholly cooperative creative machine. Everyone has a voice in its creation and this album came together the way it did and with the sound it did because the six of us did most of the writing as a unit’. The Neon Jungle comes out to play as dusk gives way to darkness in the city as its moves into night with “Stumble in the Dark”, cruises long after last call with “Drive”, and still feels the hard-hitting beats as dawn breaks on Sunday morning with “Edge of Night”. JC Brooks percolates as the album opens with a percussive patter in “Jungle” as they respond to the call of the night with the pounding rhythms of “Heartbeat” and open their door to friends and neighbors with the Prince-like Funk of “O.N.O.”. Much like the excitement of not knowing what the night can hold, The Neon Jungle moves in many different musical directions as it smooths out the grooves for the slow burn of “Playing with Fire”, quiets the beats for the smoldering Soul of “The One for Someone”, and warns to not be fooled by the dancing feet in front of you with “Watch Me” as JC Brooks turn the wheel faster for freedom in “Get Gone”.