"Same As You" by Jake RizzoReview
Today is the day on which Jake Rizzo has released his new single, "Same As You". Something of a new direction for this fine artist, the song finds him sufficiently worked up about its subject that he's struggling to get his words out at times: short staccato bursts punctuated by gasping for breath indicate the depth of his distress and indeed the word "stress" is appropriately deployed in the lyrics.
As Jake comes across not merely as a highly amiable character in real life but one sufficiently laid back as to cope with the challenges of life without getting too stressed or distressed, either the song is plunging into deeper aspects of his psyche or he's adopting a persona for the purposes of the song: hopefully for his sake the latter applies.
The rhythmic approach to the vocals (and consequently the music) takes the song closer to R&B than Jake usually goes (and the production tends to enhance this) and while headlining the review as "Jake Rizzo goes R&B" might be overstating it a bit, his musical satnav seems to have that as its destination here. The truth is, like any good artist, Jakes draws what we wants from his inspirations & applies them to the songs as he sees fit: sections of "Same As You" are very R&B, other sections much less. This is drawing on genres, not being confined by their conventions.
Created with the help of long time collaborators Joe Dolman, Jack Arnold & Matt Cotterill, the song, as I say, is off on a new arc: will it be the start of a completely new direction or is it a demonstration of his range? Either seems a good idea, though I don't doubt that he'll keep on writing the songs he wants to right & giving them the treatment which he & Team Jake feel best presents each one.
This is a more angsty Jake than we are used to (is he singing about OCD at one point?): to some extent he is exploring emotional territory which Joe had been venturing few for quite a while until he emerged into happier climes with his ‘Until You Fall In Love' EP which came out only yesterday. Perhaps Jake is setting off on his own journey of this type?
Ultimately it's up to you to make your own minds up on that. Intriguingly, when asked directly, Jake declined to offer me any hints, preferring me to approach the song as objectively as possible in the review (I hope I've not missed the target by too much) and that to me suggests that there is some quite significant point at stake here, but one he would like his listeners to take on board in their own ways rather than force it upon them.
It's a Jake Rizzo single, so that in itself is something to welcome and as usual strong & original in writing and performance. As it happens, I was discussing with another "Hot Music Live Presents" featured musician this afternoon the problem that artists who take the trouble to write meaningful lyrics have with audiences who don't really take them in: let's hope Jake-fans are not built that way. I'm sure they are not.