Single Review of Urban Ladder Society: “Juke Joint Lover”
Urban Ladder Society dubs itself as an all-star band, and you sure can tell by the tight musicianship, the musical twists and turns, and the experienced touch of knowing just when to turn on the heat and when to dial it back. The band is comprised of Victa Nooman, Henry Roosterman Stevens, Chris Gill, and Jante Mayon.
The song itself, “Juke Joint Lover,” is an instant classic. It is a steady, rhythmically-progressing classic blues tune, structured to easily fit solos and jams that I assume could stretch for several minutes when performed live. The beat is smooth, dripping with attitude befitting the lyrics, “I can be your juke joint lover. Let me love you like no other. I can be your juke joint lover. You can call me your big brother. If you’ sick ‘n tired of your man, darlin’ just give me your hand, and we can.” This five-minute, six second tune chugs along like any other smooth blues joint until the 3:07 mark, when… boom! If you hadn’t already known, you realize this song lives at the intersection of blues-meets-hip-hop, and ULS includes a top-shelf rapper onboard in Victa Nooman. Rhythmically varied, the word-heavy rap atop a classic blues musical backdrop with texture-adding guitar riffing dancing throughout, does most of the vocal heavy lifting the rest of the way, guiding this tune to its conclusion. It gives Urban Label Society a unique element not found in most blues bands, an original sound whose individual ingredients are blended deftly together to appeal to a broad audience. This song is my first introduction to Urban Ladder Society, but I’ll definitely be back for more.