Three Jams 6/12

A Jam That Came Out This Week – “Mary” – Big Thief

Brooklyn’s Big Theif’s new album Capacity tenderly touches touchy subjects, and the band saves their softest approach for “Mary,” the powerful penultimate track on their subdued, fantastic sophomore record. With an old gospel structure and singer Adrianne Lenker’s strained whisper, “Mary” clears out the haze of the previous nine tracks and plants its flag on songwriting perfection.

A Jam That I’m A Little Late On – “Bambi” – Jidenna

You’ll have to forgive me for the reasonable assumption that 2015’s “Classic Man” was a one-off hit from an industry plant, but alas: Jidenna released an album this year. I’ll grant you, listening to Bambi on the radio for the first time, I thought it might have been Jidenna, but the black-and-white island sample was so polished and the vocals were so smooth that I needed to get to the Migos flow in the third verse to ask myself, “who’s that well-dressed pop-hop dude?”

A Jam That Was A Jam When it Came Out And Is Still A Jam – “Cemetry Gates” – The Smiths

Morrissey is an asshole; he basically said so himself many times. As if luring you to a romantic encounter in a boneyard isn’t asshole-y enough, he deigns to tell you that the poetry you read is the wrong poetry, as if there ever were such a thing. But “Cemetry Gates” measures your love: can you hold someone dear who constantly insults you? If Johnny Marr is there to back him up, the answer is, sure, why not?