How to Pronounce Oncle Jazz?

Cade Stone, Staff Writer

Men I Trust is an indie pop band from Montreal, Canada. They were founded in 2014 and now boast four very successful albums under their belt. Their line-up has stayed the same since it was founded: Jessey Caron plays bass and guitar, Dragos Chiriac plays keyboard and produces all their music, and Emma Proulx sings and plays guitar. Some bands may have a major label or studio who produces their music and puts restrictions on them and deadlines, but unlike those bands Men I Trust are completely self-released. This indie pop band has most of its songs written by producer Chiriac, who spent his 30th birthday writing their new album “Oncle Jazz” and “seeing no one.” It paid off: even a year after release, the band still sees an average 1,248,003 listens on Spotify per month.

“Tailwhip,” their third most popular song on Spotify has an average of 18,017,217 listens, which is really amazing for such a small band. The song itself has really strong and powerful lyrics. It’s about someone being happy about leaving, how sometimes leaving is for the better, and how everything will ultimately be okay. The harmonic and upbeat music gives the song an almost trance-like feeling. The way Proulx sings is not how most sing: she is very shy, and it shows in her singing, as well as some of the band’s live shows. The way she sings is very soft and relaxing. There is also another version of “Tailwhip” on the album, “Tailwhip Revisited,” which gives the song a more pop sound and extends the song a little bit while removing the lyrics completely.

“Seven” is another really good song with 9,173,204 listens. The song starts off with an amazing guitar riff, and leads into another harmonic and peaceful vibe, but the lyrics hide something a little dark. The song seems (to me) to be about a man cheating on his girlfriend: the speaker says, “He’d never done that with a lover before.” This song is a really good take on hiding dark lyrics within a really catchy tune and uplifting music.

The title track “Oncle Jazz” seems to play off of a radio station introduction. The guitar riff and violins mixed with the amazing piano stitches together a truly amazing song and my personal favorite from the album. The only lyric in the song is “You’re listening to Oncle Jazz.” The opening track is only fifty-seven seconds, but the repeat button can make it as long as you want it to be. The melody of all the instruments coming together is just a really, really nice blend. Another short fifty-two second song in the album, “Fiero GT,” is a strong, short guitar rock song. It caught me off guard when I was listening to the album since it was a lot louder and more rock-sounding than the other, more mellow songs. It also only has one line, which adds to the retro radio vibe. “Slap Pie,” however, has no lyrics. It definitely gave me some retro 80s vibes since it used a piano melody that seems like something you would hear out of a “Wham!” song. One of the best songs without lyrics, however, has to be “Alright,” which gives off a strong jazz feel mixed in with their typical indie pop sound. “Poodle of Mud” gives off a strong “alien” vibe that I haven’t heard in a song before; it’s not my favorite but it’s alright considering it’s only a minute long and has no lyrics at all. All these songs show that even without lyrics you can make an amazing song like “Poplar Tree,” a solo piano piece that is built on a really strong piano melody. It’s a beautiful song that’s fast and gives you a happy feeling inside.

Even though Men I Trust is an indie band that does things differently from most bands, they still have the typical song or two about break-ups, and “Say Can You Hear” is exactly one of those songs. The whole song has a very rebellious vibe, like angry teenagers wrote it, but it has a dream pop background. The lyrics describe a person who is very self-absorbed. It seems to me the person who the song is about was a toxic person who held grudges and wanted the whole world to bend around them. 

Have you ever heard a song that just has the essence of a happy time of just being by yourself?  “Air” is one of the top five songs on this album. It’s a simple melody with lyrics about just needing space. The whole song is a masterpiece, conveying raw emotion in a song that you can’t help but just dance to. The whole feel of a song is just a vibe that checks you over and over again while sending you happy vibes at the same time.

“Oncle Jazz” by Men I Trust is a phenomenal album, and I highly recommend it if you want to expand your music taste to include one of the most solid bands around. I rate this album an 8.9 out of 10, just because some of the tracks seemed a little copied off each other, All in all, though, this is an excellent album!