6 Years Of Waiting Finally Comes To An End
‘The Theory Of Whatever’ Is Jamie T at his finest.
It’s been 6 years since we last saw any new music from Jamie T, and ever since the 2016 release of ‘Trick’, fans have been eager to hear more from the ‘Sheila’ singer. A few months ago, Jamie T announced his next album, ‘The Theory Of Whatever’ and released the lead single ‘The Old Style Raiders’ and ever since, it has been a waiting game for the album to finally hit the shelves, but now that is upon us, with the album release being brought forward to 22nd July, instead of the original planned 29th July. The perks of this job are you get to hear albums like this before the majority of other people, and when an album is this good, it makes it extra special.
The album opens with ’90s Cars’, a traditionally Jamie T track. It’s light and airy, driven by a simple drum track, and the fast flowing vocals run over the top, telling a story and completing that summery, indie feel that a lot of his music has. There’s perhaps a slightly more electronic feel to it, as New Order-esque drum machines provide the fills between the verses, and echoey synths dance behind the jangle of the guitars. ‘The Old Style Raiders’ follows on, the first single we heard from the new album.
‘The Old Style Raiders’ loses the electronic feel, with a much more raw feel, reminiscent of Jamie T’s first album ‘Panic Prevention’. This has been the case for his last few albums, he will play around and experiment with new sounds throughout the album, but there’s always one track which could have been featured on any of his earlier albums.
The electronic elements come back for ‘British Hell’, a song which reminds me of something that The Streets may have come out with. It’s fast flowing, switching between rapped verses to the singalong indie pre-chorus and chorus. It’s driven by a grungy, off beat guitar riff and distorted bass, with light drums thrown in for good measure. ‘The Terror Of Lambeth Love’ keeps the off beat rhythms going, giving off jazzy vibes, with a more relaxed feel than the opening trio of tracks. Think more ‘Love Is Only A Heartbeat Away’ as opposed to his more popular ‘Sheila’ ferocity. By this point, you’re only four tracks in, and you’ve already had everything you’d expect and more from an album from Jamie T. He’s always pushed the barriers of indie/alternative music, and continues to do so with this album.
‘Keying Lamborghinis’ echoes his hip hop influences, as heavy, swelling synths are laid over a simple yet driving drum machine pattern. ‘St George Wharf Tower’ is a soft, elector-acoustic track, laden with melodic guitar which echoes the vocal lines. This is what I’ve always appreciated about Jamie T, he can shift from something punchy and energetic, to something chilled and acoustic, and make it work. Many artists try switching their albums up a bit, and it always feels a bit forced, whereas with Jamie T, it appears to be the natural progression of his albums. You’ll get one or two tracks that are heavy and laden with instruments, and they’re nearly always followed by something stripped back and relaxed. The same happens later in the album with ‘Thank You’, a track not quite as relaxed as ‘St George…” but still channelling those acoustic vibes.
‘A Million And One Ways To Die’ is going to be the big hit for the upcoming live shows I feel. It could have been taken off any early 2000’s indie album, yet it doesn’t sound like something that’s been done before. For me, there’s footprints of The Fratellis, The Libertines and The Strokes throughout the track. It’s got the jangle guitar riff which has been a part of indie music since it began, and it just feels like one of those tracks where the crowd will be pelting out every single word, it’s not just a singalong chorus, it’s a singalong track, and it’s a personal favourite from the album. ‘Between The Tracks’ has a similar vibe, it’s uplifting and has a similar overall sound to his last musical endeavour ‘Trick’. Whether the track is one that was written during the same time, I couldn’t say, however it wouldn’t come as a surprise given the feel of the track.
‘Sabre Tooth’ offers a similar vibe to the aforementioned ‘A Million And One…’, and then it’s followed up with another acoustic track with ‘Talk Is Cheap’. A track which really gives vibes of an early demo tape or something alike. It’s finished with all the finesse of a final album track, but the recording techniques bring in the demo feel, adding a touch of rawness and edginess to make the track nostalgic for any long term Jamie T fan, as it echoes those first couple of albums.
When I first heard ‘Old Republican’, it screamed to me of ‘Velociraptor’ era Kasabian to start with, before it charges into the energy and guitar laden signature sound which Jamie T has been developing for nearly two decades. It feels like what will become another big indie singalong when he gets to perform it live. ‘50,000 Unmarked Bullets’ closes off the album in style. To start with, the guitars are dropped and Jamie has taken a seat at the piano. As is usually the case, the song tells a story of hardship and life, tales fo giving up and losing everything, but with a reassuring feel that everything will correct itself in time. Something which Jamie T seems to have a knack for being able to channel through his music.
Was this album worth the six year wait? Yes. It’ll be even more worth the wait later this year when fans will get to see the new tracks intertwined with his older material as he takes to stages across the UK for his scheduled tour of the album. Extra dates have been added in some cities due to demand, but tickets are running low, so take our word for it and grab yourself some tickets. You won’t regret it.