Artist Spotlight

Review: Dietrich Jon, “Higher”

No Comments 2 November 2014

Review: Dietrich Jon, “Higher”

“There’s a pretty great 1970s pop/rock vibe running rampant throughout the course of Higher. But the players in Dietrich Jon temper that stylized sound with a spontaneity that belies the practiced musicianship that lies beneath.”

Artist: Dietrich Jon

EP: Higher

Genre: Alt Folk / Rock

RIYL: HAIM, Grizzly Bear, of Montreal

Dietrich Jon Higher

This Bloomington (Indiana)-by-way-of-The Netherlands quintet came rather riotously out of the gate without warning. Dietrich Jon isn’t exactly an anomaly; Bloomington has a rich history of attracting musical talent. During my time living there, some of the most talented musicians I’ve heard took to the stages and studios of this small, liberal Midwest city. Anytime I can get a fix on emerging songwriters and groups, I know better than to let the opportunity slip. And Dietrich Jon don’t disappoint.

The first notes of “SY.B.G.” hit quickly and with a refreshing edge; there are strings that add a gloriously dramatic sound reminiscent of the 1970s and 80s that rode that fine line between dance and rock. It’s a blast of the past with a modern twist. “Lions” follows with a slightly different sound, but keeps up the vintage vibe. It rides a melodic wave that ebbs and flows easily and is punctuated with fantastic lead and backing vocals.

“Her” is a fast-paced progression of lyrical frustration wrapped up in a charming folk pop package. The pace feels anxious, much like the subject matter; and it’s impossible not to believe vocalist Diederik Van Wassenaer when he sings about feeling the burning love of a woman he constantly sees but can’t seem to approach. It’s all about making that first move, and having the nerve to follow through. And the entire quintet of players follows through with this gem of a tune. “Higher” closes the EP on, well, a high note. This song, in particular, shows great potential for a band that has the goods to push their arrangements and songwriting to another level. It’s a highly successful melding of their uniquely stylish sound that showcases their mainstream appeal.

There’s a pretty great 1970s pop/rock vibe running rampant throughout the course of Higher. But the players in Dietrich Jon temper that stylized sound with a spontaneity that belies the practiced musicianship that lies beneath. It’s just a damn fun four songs to listen to; it’s joyful and celebratory of this emotional rollercoaster we all ride in our lives. The lyricism is relatable and the music thoroughly enjoyable. Take a moment and get caught up in the vibe Dietrich Jon is throwing down.

Dietrich Jon on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dietrichjontheband

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