Inspired by the protests and police confrontations in their hometown during the summer of 2020, Richmond rock band, The J.O.B. decided to preserve the moment with this powerful new music video for their latest single, “Criminal”.
“There’s a lot to this song, a lot of subtext,” says Jim O’Ferrell, the band’s co-founder and singer/guitarist. “We witnessed the demonstrations happening downtown every day, every night, here and in other cities all at once,” O’Ferrell explained. “We recognized it as a pivotal event of our generation and we had to write about it, to preserve it as we experienced it.”O’Ferrell is correct.
I found myself in awe of the creativity and cinematography of this bold and relevant video. It was filmed in the band’s hometown of Richmond and gives a gritty performance on this soulful, bluesy, and rock track. With boarded windows, darkness, graffiti, and empty streets, this video sees what it is like from the eyes of the marcher. With every last detail of this creation, The J.O.B beautifully intersects music and important cultural events.
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Soft Punch, aka Rye Thomas, of Washington D.C. released his debut album, Above Water on September 15th, after years of working on it.
The album is a labor of love that Soft Punch, the stage name of Rye Thomas, has been working on for years since the diagnosis of his chronic illness. It takes you through the highs and lows, mourning the freedom lost, and celebrating the things that he is grateful for in his day to day life. I had the opportunity to sit down and talk to him about his process of writing the album.
The titles of albums are the first thing that an artist sees. That, and the artist’s name. When I first heard the name ‘Soft Punch’, I was intrigued. It was gentle but intentional. “I don’t know if I had a specific ‘A-ha, Lightbulb’ moment, but I was interested in words that sound good together and have multiple meanings,” Thomas said. “It’s a gentle hit, and a nonalcoholic punch. It’s the image of something harsh and something soft is interesting to me. I think I lucked out.”