Hey, I have always been eager to get into new Heavy Metal bands, it’s been this way for decades now. 1992 was no different than any other year, as far as searching out the latest and/or newest Heavy Metal Bands and albums. When I first heard Jackyl back in 1992, well, it was the song “The Lumberjack”… with a chainsaw being used for a solo. A chainsaw used as a dominant musical instrument… in a Heavy Metal song, now that is cool, that is Metal. Aw heck, I am going to be blunt and admit… this chainsaw ripping through “The Lumberjack” song gave me goose bumps back in 1992. Now, does this chainsaw and “The Lumberjack” song have the same goose bump affect on me today? Honestly, not as many goose bumps generate when I listen to this song in 2009, still I like the song just as much as ever. Maybe it is due to the fact, that I know the chainsaw is coming, after listening to this song so many times over the years. Make no mistake, “The Lumberjack” song still pumps me up and makes me wish I had an old, decrepit, decaying barn to tear down while I listen to this song.
This debut album from Jackyl, which is self titled, was a refreshing reminder back in 1992 that Heavy Metal did not curl up into a ball and wither away. Jackyl’s brand of Heavy Metal arrived right when this Metalhead needed it most, when rumors abounded within the mainstream media that Metal Music was done. Well, Heavy Metal never went away, if anything, the mainstream media just did not cover the Metal Music that was out there in the 1990’s, no publicity, therefore… no existence. Right? Wrong! Jackyl was a perfect example of Heavy Metal existing in the decade of the ’90’s. Other than the chainsaw, Jackyl did not reinvent the Metal wheel back in 1992, rather they delivered upon the Metal community an album that kicked some serious tail. “Jackyl” was an album that presented some heavy hitting, kick the dirt and throw the garbage can down the driveway – attitude and songs.
Back in 1995, I worked for a very large, mail order, perennial farm in expensive Connecticut. I can remember working the perennial fields during the Summer, driving a tractor, during a very, very, long dry spell. I recall this one cool, fellow Metalhead who drove a tractor on this farm as well… he and I both so wished it would rain. I introduced him to this Jackyl debut album, (I had it on cassette then), “When Will It Rain” became a theme song for us working the fields at this perennial farm. My Metalhead buddy borrowed my Jackyl cassette to listen to, while he worked the fields with his tractor. (There is definitely something about Jackyl’s Heavy Metal and working outdoors… one seems to compliment the other). “Down On Me” is another very memorable song from “Jackyl”, nothing fancy here, just a steady, Heavy Metal track, that is carried by the rhythm section with authority. “Dirty Little Mind” is like a speeding, Metal ball of wire, uncoiling with spastic Heavy Metal abandon.
In other words, “Jackyl” was never going to indulge in therapeutic topics, nor delve into intricate musical musings. Instead, “Jackyl” was – and still is, a down home, blue collar, back roads, type of Heavy Metal album and band. “Jackyl” was never meant to impress the judges, mainstream media, or uptight people in general. Jackyl the band and “Jackyl” the album, no doubt impressed me in 1992… still does. I think that is why I appreciate this debut album from Jackyl so much, this band wrote songs to have a good time to and maybe heave that rotted log into the woods to.
Jackyl, as they appeared on their debut album “Jackyl”: Jesse James Dupree on vocals & chainsaw, Jimmy Stiff on guitar, Jeff Worley on guitar, Tom Bettini on bass guitar and Chris Worley on drums.