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Signs & Signifiers (International Jewel Box Version)

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iTunes Review

Oklahoma’s JD McPherson is obviously obsessed with vintage recordings, yet his sound isn’t overly retro. Blame it on good taste and memorable tunes. Sure, straight-up rockabilly worship emanates from the opening “North Side Gal”, which sounds like it was mixed at Sun Studio circa 1956. And the piano-pounding, sax-blasting closer “Scandalous” would make perfect sense piping from the speakers of an old low-riding Chevy Impala (dig that vintage tube-amp guitar distortion). But McPherson deviates from total malt-shop kitsch with the slow-burning title track, which boasts proto-shoegazing guitar effects that have more in common with Johnny Marr than Johnny B. Goode. With its lush string arrangements and smoldering tempos, the dark and moody “A Gentle Awakening” would sit well on a David Lynch soundtrack or alongside Lana Del Rey’s “Video Games” on a mix for that special someone. Still, standout cuts like “Dimes for Nickels” (as well as the anachronistic album cover photo) reveal a man who feels more comfortable living in a world built from past artifacts.

Customer Reviews

Sounds bang up to date

Could be from the 60s but really is nice to hear something different. Quality album worth a listen.

Great album

Fantastic album! Would have fitted perfectly in with music from the 50s alongside the likes of Bill Haley.
Love it!

Straight from the 50s!

A great album with a mix of tracks that could of come straight from 50s. Outstanding tracks are the single release North Side Gal with Fire Bug, Scratching Circles, Dimes for Nickles & Scandalous all sounding true to the style. Even made it on to Radio 2, keeping on rocking rolling!


Born: 14 April 1977 in Buffalo Valley, OK

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '10s

Singer/songwriter JD McPherson makes vintage-sounding rock with nods to '40s R&B, blues, and '50s rockabilly. A native of Oklahoma, he grew up listening to a wide array of music from traditional country and rockabilly to punk and hip-hop. Although music was always an interest, McPherson first worked on his family's cattle ranch and later earned a Master's degree in open media from Tulsa University, eventually teaching and receiving attention for his video art installations. McPherson is a member...
Full bio
Signs & Signifiers (International Jewel Box Version), JD McPherson
View in iTunes
  • £4.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music
  • Released: 01 January 2011

Customer Ratings