ONE THE JUGGLER
NEARLY A SIN
Rejoice, music lovers! The day that you didn’t know you were waiting for has finally arrived! Yes, on June 1st, 2015, the debut album by One The Juggler finally made its CD debut! Originally released in 1984, Nearly A Sin was one of those albums that stood out from the pack. The band’s songs and gypsy image harkened back to the early ‘70s when David Bowie was still a musical chameleon, Marc Bolan had discovered rock but had not succumbed to the lure of glitter and feather boas and The Faces’ free-spirited bassist Ronnie Lane did whatever the hell he wanted. Production-wise, the album wasn’t as raw as that description - this was the ‘80s after all - but the songs were certainly influenced by that transitional period when Rock was at its most pure and unpretentious.
When One The Juggler released their first single in ’83, they jumped into a sea of fashion-oriented bands whose musical talent was secondary to their image. For OTJ, it was the opposite – the songs came first and everything else was a distant second. Sounding a bit like a Spiders From Mars-influenced The Only Ones without the heroin addiction, OTJ were a Rock band coated in a thin layer of ‘80s Pop and released some great singles and this excellent debut album filled to the brim with solid ‘choons’. “Passion Killer,” “Enjoy Yoursel,” “Damage Is Done,” “Are You The One?” and “Django’s Coming” are quality tracks but only the tip of the iceberg. It is mind-boggling that they weren’t any bigger.
Angel Air Records has FINALLY released this gem on CD, adding nine bonus tracks including non-album b-sides, unreleased recordings and “It Hurts,” a rare post-album single that matches the quality of the album. And the liner notes? Well, I can’t make a comment about those since I wrote them, but they offer a history of the band with input from band members Rokko and Lushi. So, grab yourself a copy, listen, read on and give One The Juggler the respect they deserve.
P.S. With any luck, this reissue will re-introduce this great band to a new generation. With that being said, I’d also like to mention that OTJ members Lushi (Jerry T. Jones) and Lin (Colin Minchin) are now in a band by the name of Glamweazel. Their debut album, Once Upon A Weazel, is pretty ace for those of you who love smart, sharp, authentic British Rock and Pop. It is an album so varied that it plays like a ‘greatest hits’ collection and each track is top notch. Their forthcoming second album, The Art Of The Meltdown, is just as amazing. To think that these blokes are still at the top of their game 30+ years after their ‘heyday’ proves that you can’t keep a good band down. Rock on, mates!