Jem - It All Starts Here...

It All Starts Here...


First Appeared at The Music Box, January 2004, Volume 11, #1

Written by John Metzger


Introductory EPs from new artists can be difficult things to grasp. After all, itís nearly impossible to get the full flavor of what a performer has to offer over the course of just a handful of songs. Take, for example, It All Starts Here..., the debut from Jem Griffiths. If her name sounds familiar, itís because the Welsh songwriter co-wrote Nothing Fails, a tune that was prominently featured on Madonnaís recent outing American Life. Not surprisingly, on four of the five songs on It All Starts Here..., dance beats and heavy grooves linger beneath Griffithsí dreamy pop vocals, and the result sounds like Dido recast as a soul star. Itís a beautiful, cool, and compelling mix, particularly on Just a Ride and the title track from her forthcoming full-length album Finally Woken. Yet, itís the collectionís final tune Flying High that is the most intriguing. Here, Griffiths sheds the heavy-handed production of Yoad Nevo and Ge-ology to deliver a delicate folk song that is buoyant and lovely, revealing that there just may be more to Jem than initially meets the eye. starstarstar



1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!


Copyright © 2003 The Music Box