Indie Affinity: Knife Man Review

Andrew Jackson Jihad is a band I’ve come to love this year. The one of kind Phoenix duo is comprised of Sean Bonette and Ben Gallaty. The band refers to themselves as indie rock, but can be specifically described as folk-punk with Americana undertones. A great quality of this band is their raw, energetic sound. AJJ is able to convey an intimate, lively sound through their music that makes you feel as though you’re at one of their shows. It’s apparent that their lyrics are inspired by Bonnette’s personal experiences. He brings attention to problems in society and human behavior that really make you think. His witty way of writing from his own perspective draws you into listening intently to the words in each song.

photo from Phoenix New Times

I am now celebrating the release of Knife Man, the band’s 4th and latest album as of September 20 (on Asian Man Records).  Knife Man is different from the band’s previous albums in that it’s fairly structured, in contrast to the rough style associated with the band. Although Knife Man is a musical shift for AJJ, it still contains the same amount of raw energy I love about them. Bonnette revealed that he drew lyrical inspiration for the album from his job at a homeless shelter and his current long-distance relationship. It’s obvious of his inspiration in tracks such as “Distance” and my personal favorite, “No One”. The songs on this album vary from bold, fast-paced punk to catchy, whimsical indie folk. As much as I love this album, I recommend to new fans of AJJ to first start with the band’s older albums before listening to Knife Man, to better comprehend the band’s exceptional style.

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