J Church / Sound on Sound - Split [7 inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

J Church / Sound on Sound

Split [7 inch] (2007)

Underground Communiqué

I have a hard time meeting long-time fans of pop-punk who don't have a hard-on for J Church.

J Church's first song, "Flirting with the Bourgeois Dream" comes off their latest album, The Horror of Life. For those who don't already know what to expect from your typical J Church song, it's pop-punk with a lot of aggression and lyrics with something to say. Instead of turning to over-production, the band cranked up the fuzz on the guitars and made it sound as though the song was recorded in a basement. While not their best track, it's a good preview for those not willing to shell out for the full-length before having a taste.

J Church's second song sees them covering the MIsfit's classic "Where Eagles Dare," which is the most fun I had on either side of this 7". That's probably because the fuzzed out production and aggression isn't something I'm used to hearing from J Church, but also because there's nothing more fun than singing, "I ain't no goddamned sun of a bitch." The production follows that of the first song and works really well.

Chicago's Sound on Sound takes care of Side B. Their first song, "When We Were the Kids" has great lyrics, but I really have to try and bring myself to enjoy the vocals. The band's rhythmic, bass-heavy punk works great instrumentally, but on the first track the vocals consistently prevent me from ever enjoying the song, which is a pretty large bump in the road.

Sound on Sound offers up a cover of "Old Chunk of Coal," probably best made famous by Johnny Cash, although he didn't write it to begin with. It works a lot better than their original -- but that's not a songwriting issue, it's a vocal thing again.

One of the nicest things about this release is the artwork, which was done by Donovan Foote. It's beautiful and the heavy pink vinyl that accompanies the cover ain't so hard on the eyes either.