Penguin Eggs

Wednesday, 18 December 2019 17:35

Jennis

Written by Roger Levesque
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The Mirror (Independent)

Together more than five years now, Jennis is the serious but light-hearted, beyond-category collaboration of two versatile Ontario multi-instrumentalist/singers: Jennifer Gillmor (cello, didgeridoo, bass, flute) and Dennis Gaumond (guitars, harmonica, banjitar, wazinator).

Guests on drums, percussion, backing vocals, and overdubbing build a full sound on a dozen of their original songs and a cover of Bob Marley’s Get Up Stand Up.

Riffs of blues, rock, folk, reggae, and more-exotic global seasoning find their way into these catchy hybrid grooves. Gillmor’s growling didgeridoo is cool but more of her lead vocals would be welcome next time around.

It’s the offbeat wordplay that keeps you listening, and counter-culture or pop-culture references will resonate most readily with the boomer generation. Gaumond’s lyrics take on a vast array of psycho-social concerns, from enjoying the moment (You Never Know) to commentaries on the consumer ethic (Too Much Stuff), musings on humanity’s shortcomings and the nature of reality.

Lines like “the akashic record is spinning on our turntable” skirt the far edge of new age consciousness but in the end good intentions feel designed to make you smile as you’re pondering life, the universe, and everything.

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