Gary Numan Jagged
By Mike Ventarola
During the late 70s, Gary Numan burst upon the
newly formed MTV generation with his only U.S. hit, Cars. Once the New
Wave era disappeared Numan continued to create music which now contains an
overwhelming voluminous back catalog of songs spanning more than 20 albums.
While the mainstream was rather quick to toss away future works from Numan, he
nonetheless maintained a foothold among his acquired fanbase, some whom have
been with him since the outset of his career.
Ultimately, Numan was never given his proper due by the
mainstream media or record producers. It seemed as though each release caused
record label executives to shake their heads, not quite knowing what to do with
his music much less how to market it appropriately. Undaunted, Numan maintained
his heart in the punk rock roots from whence he sprang, utilizing the
electronic medium to capture the sounds, alienation and scenarios of his many
Jagged is the first release of Numans after a
five-year absence to attend to personal family matters. In the back of his
mind, the follow up to Pure was never far behind. Once again Numan set
out to capture the soundtrack of a stark and bleak world. Like Pure
before it Jagged is sure to become a classic among Goth music fans
across the globe. The inspiration for Jagged initially came while Numan
was watching a television program about a serial killer. This set things in
motion where he questioned the events that would make one person go down a road
towards death and madness while another would seek out a creative outlet.
Pressure opens with a sense of malevolence with an
infusion of Middle Eastern horn rhythms that haunt the listener. Lyrically, we
are brought to the introspective portion of a mind that feels totally betrayed
and lost. The track could easily become an anthem among anyone who has ever had
their heart broken. Fold continues with the sense of oppressive
atmospherics with unique electronic intonations. Here, we are brought to that
place where compassion turns involutionally toward vengeance, reasoning is lost
to the start of madness.
Halo indirectly points a finger at religious
hypocrisy and Slave, when taken in the context of the madness of a
serial killer, can be quite frightening indeed. Haunted shows a tortured
soul unable to let go of malevolent obsessive thoughts which lead to
unspeakable deeds. Clearly, someone has lead our protagonist towards this sense
of disconnection . Melt is the final residue between faith and
disbelief. Our protagonist has crossed the border between madness and reality
and has made the summation that everything is really an empty hell to endure.
Jagged was produced and engineered by Gary Numan and
Ade Fenton. This collaboration clearly has assisted Numan to create one of his
finest masterpieces. Musically, Numan and Fenton have managed to create a
hybrid of sounds that incorporate goth, industrial and rock elements, largely
enhanced by the electronic medium. Jagged is a dark musical masterpiece that
should not be missed!
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