Hearing Aide: Ross Jenssen ‘Stories’

Future groove group Ross Jenssen put forth their sophomore release February 7, titled Stories. The instrumental nature of the album , sans lyrics, provides a suitable backdrop for listeners to marry their own imagination with the instrumentation. A frantic moodiness looms throughout the EP, keeping the listener ever so slightly on edge. Ross Jenssen (writer/producer), Brian Ross (bass), Sam McGarrity (guitar), Jules Jenssen (drums/moog), and Ricky Tiven (violin on tracks 2,3) are the instrument wielders behind the madness.

Stories opens with “The Chronicle,” which begins with brooding bass before quick and subtle percussion and guitar distorted with a trace of metal lend the song a sense of urgency. “The Tall Tale” holds a beat that ceaselessly drives the song forward before sliding into its own noodly jam. “The Myth” rounds out the three-track trio with a flurry of wavering tempos that suggest the group couldn’t settle on a cohesive rhythm for the closing tune.

The songs are similar enough in style that if you were to listen without paying attention to track numbers or knowing this was a three song EP, you could mistake it as one lengthy jam. It’s a bit too repetitive, although the musicianship is crisp and controlled. Recorded at Sub Station Studio in Housatonic, MA, the EP was engineered by Jackson Whalan, Jules Jenssen, Ian Stewart, mixed by Ian Stewart, mastered by Taylor Larson (periphery, veil of maya, FFTL) with album cover by Simon Ban. Get the album here.

Key Track: The Chronicle