“Abriel” from The Aaron Jaxon Band

Gallant and sounding like a medieval love story, the new single “Abriel” from The Aaron Jaxon Band weaves together roots rock and enamoring lyrics. A bright melody and a story for the ages, following along the song’s journey is like reading a fairy tale. The twist, of course, is that the song sounds anything but typical, and The Aaron Jaxon Band further encourage their magical mix of blues, rock and Americana rhythms.

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Recalling the lyrical narratives of Bob Dylan, Jaxon and his band’s unique brew cascades its cadence down a wall of sound complete with keys and bluesy bass lines. Jaxon, who grew up in East Texas idolizing guitarists Kenny Wayne Shepherd and Jonny Lang, sets the stage for his listeners with his warm voice. One of the lines this ambitious tale of a song is lately I’ve been getting good at quitting. The melody is toe-tapping with Jaxon relying on the intricate dusty guitars and purring drums to mosey his way through the words. When he sings the chorus, so I’ll be with you in the morning, Abriel, Oh Abriel, the listener falls down the rabbit hole imagining this fascinating women adorning his dreams. Like a chess game, he sings of kings and queens and the brave line, I would save you from this predatory landscape.

Jaxon, who is now based in Johnson City, Tenn., released his debut self-titled debut (under The Aaron Jaxon Band) in 2013. Two years later, they released Light on the Inside. Compared to the song “Irrationality” (from Light on the Inside), “Abriel” continues Jaxon’s wordsmith ways. He likes to pack a lot of words and movement in his songs – making them more chapters in a book, per se, then a quick pop song. What The Aaron Jaxon Band continues to excel at, besides these lyrical twists and turns, are an equally robust music bed. “Abriel” is more amber, or country toned. The keys and the bass rhythms have a strong blues and bold anthems in the making, but it’s Jaxon’s every-man voice that champions the listener’s experience. He has a softness in his voice that just makes you smile (think Aaron Watson) and the cleverness of The Steve Miller Band.

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It’s a longer song, clocking in just over five-and-half minutes, so he takes his time to create a romantic and underdog story, all the while, coaxing the listener with a wide swath of country-hued guitars and steady drum work. At the song’s bridge, the guitars get heavier, swelling more into metallic sky blues and even stretching for the stars, so it seems, but the dancers out there will find this amorous tale one to hold close and dance a little closer, a little longer. Near the song’s end, the electric guitar takes a second swing a solo and the crescendo, far-reaching conclusion wraps up nicely with the natural, easy to like Jaxon vocals. It turns out the real twist to the song is that ‘Abriel’ is Jaxon’s girlfriend’s middle name. As he maintains his sobriety, this track adores her steadfastness and support. Either way, it’s still an artistic achievement that deserves more than one hurrah.  

Michael Rand

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