MUSIC: OURS @ Maxwell’s (Dec 2)

Jimmy Gnecco (the leader of Ours) grew up in New Jersey and played Maxwell’s at the beginning of his career. And he still comes back on a regular basis. This show was Jimmy’s wish to gather family and friends to play all together and have a last party before Christmas. Maxwell’s is a very intimate venue – it is so intimate that the performers have to come through the audience to get to the stage – with a small capacity (less than 200 people). Jimmy and the band are very loving and welcoming. They opened with “Willing” and the whole show was full of energy with Ours’ classics and ending with “Fallen Souls”.

Video:  “Ran Away to Tell the World”

Jimmy is armed with a powerful voice that could go from eerie falsetto to screams. And as people like to say, his voice is lingering on the cusp between angel and banshee. The band moves his audience emotionally. Jimmy’s voice creates a feeling of fear, anger or sadness. The guitars set a dark mood and  the drums groove has a tribal sound. Jimmy also sings eyes-closed when performing personal and emotionally-charged songs. The show started with Jimmy’s daughter Zoe and her band “Waldwick School of Rock”. She also performed later with her father (see video highlight). Jimmy kept looking at her with pride. I wish her big things coming her way in the future. Candace Harrison joined the band to sing “Meet me in the Tower” (see video). Seeing Ours live is a powerful, chilling and emotional experience, one would only understand unless they heard and witnessed it with their own ears and eyes. 

Video: Show highlights

Video: “Meet me in the Tower”

Band: Static (Guitar), Chris Goodlof (Bass), April Bauer (Piano,Keyboards), James (from Florida)(Drums)

Jimmi Gnecco’s vocal and physical are very often compared to Jeff Buckley with whom he started a friendship shortly before his death. Gnecco cites him as an inspiration later in his career but stresses that he was not an influence on his singing style, explaining that he and Buckley shared a lot of the same music influences growing up. Jimmy listened to old Motown artists like the Jackson Five, Smokey Robinson, and Marvin Gaye. Gnecco calls Gaye’s What’s Going On his favorite album - (Check the video Highlight with a short extract of” Mercy, Mercy Me”) - He has also cited artists and bands like Frank Sinatra, The Doors, U2, Radiohead, Jellyfish, Fionna Apple, Bjork and k.d. lang as people that helped shape his musical pathway. In 2002, a tragic family incident caused Jimmy Gnecco to reconsider his choice to be a constantly touring musician after being distraught about not being there for his loved ones. It took a long while for Gnecco to resume his career as a musician. That’s probably one among other reasons why he is one of the most underrated talents in the business.

Ours have released three albums to date: Distorted Lullabies (2001), Precious (2002), Mercy (Dancing for the Death of an Imaginary Enemy) (2008). Jimmy Gnecco released a solo album “The Heart”(2010).

Note that OURS has recorded a new version of the song “Murder” for the film “Zero Dark thirty” from Director Kathryn Bigelow.


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