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JJAMZ (that's pronounced "Juh-Jamz" - you'll want to remember this; you'll be telling all your friends about them) dabble in some of the giddiest sounds this side of summer. So if the ole post-holiday dive of the thermometer's got you feeling icy blue, we're pleased to be offering an invigorating plunge into snappy little numbers, like "Heartbeat" and "Suicide Pact," that'll warm the body and the soul if you let 'em. In fact, that's what James Valentine, Jason Boesel, Alex Greenwald, Michael Runion, and Z Berg (Get it?!) originally intended the band for. The five musicians were a little burnt out from the responsibilities of their other, tiny little outfits like Maroon 5, Rilo Kiley, Bright Eyes, and Phantom Planet, using JJAMZ as a way of unwinding together. Last Fall, the super-group was kind enough to stop by our Launch Pad Party in Brooklyn. It's a perfect show - more hooks than a Mrs. Paul's fishing vessel, really - and we've been waiting for the perfect time to release it into the wild. So snap out of your post-holiday coma and embrace the sunnier side of life. Crank up these JJAMZ!

Transcript

Can you hear my heartbeat? Please don't stand so close to me
My limo never came so I left with you instead.
so we headed west We ran across the sand until our clothes were soaking wet.
- And the waves tore us to shreds - As the sun began to set As they all disappeared As they all disappeared Into the ether Into thin air We'll take our time and pay no mind As they all disa... They all disappear - So I carved both of our names into my pale white chest Asked you to do the same, it seemed a reasonable request I nearly lost it when you said yes - The courthouse wouldn't do It was a crowded mess So we took our vows in silence on the Haunted Mansion steps - As the light parade commenced - It left the commoners content - But we couldn't have cared less - As they all disappeared As they all disappeared Into the ether Into thin air We take our time and pay no mind As they all disa... They all disappear As they all disappeared As they all disappeared Into the ether Into thin air We take our time and pay no mind As they all disa.
.
They all disappear - Felt like a first love Slow summers and slow drugs I thought I could keep up You proved to be too much The crew that we ran with Did plenty of damage The chaos, the madness We couldn't be touched And the party didn't end until the next one could begin But it was never enough, never enough, never It was never enough, never enough, never Though you hoped it'd be So hopelessly You always played too rough So hard that you drew blood But I kept my mouth shut I knew it would catch up But none took you lightly The wild scenes nightly As you chased it wildly Had us all on the run And the party didn't end until the next one could begin But it was never enough, never enough, never It was never enough, never enough, never Though you hoped it'd be So hopelessly It was never enough, never enough, never it was never enough, never enough Though you hoped it'd be So hopelessly And I didn't know that I was wrong to try To make you see the dying in your eyes But you're never satisfied And I finally realized You were never enough, never enough, never You were never enough, never enough, never Though you hoped to be So hopelessly And we were never enough, never enough, never We were never enough, never enough, never Though we hoped to be So hopelessly So hopelessly So hopelessly - This is not a good idea I know it isn't right But I'm giving it my all This is war So I'll fight I'm not quite cut out for this I don't stay mad for long But my attacks are planned Rockets poised so I'll launch them If you can't get what you want It's not always worth the trouble You and I know But if you stop It's not giving up To know you're wrong How can I just take it back? When my hands are all tied up I'm looking for some symmetry It's fucked But I need some vindication of punishment I know I'm playing God But I remain fearless I don't trust that they'll grant the, the charge What you want is not always worth the trouble You and I know But if you stop It's not giving up to know you're wrong and I'm wrong What I want is not always worth the trouble you and I know so if you stop it's not giving up to know you're wrong What I want is not always worth the trouble you and I know so if I stop it's not giving up to know you're wrong and I know - Buried alive, "Body of Christ" they cried.
I was just cleverly disguised.
Burn me alive, avert your Pagan eyes.
Oh, even the good ones lie.
Yes, even the good ones, they lie Yes, even the good ones they waste your time.
Sometimes - And it's a lonesome feeling, one you can't deny.
This lonesome living's, all we can provide.
So if you need me, is something you decide It's quite a feeling once you realize fake is what you like.
- You caught my eye, but it was not our time.
You were dumb and I was blind.
- You caught my eye, but it was not our time.
No, it wasn't worth to try.
'Cause even the good ones, they lie.
Yes, even the good ones, they waste your time.
- Sometimes... - Sometimes... - And it's lonesome feeling, one you can't deny.
This lonesome city's poised to rob you blind.
So if you need me, is something you decide It's quite a feeling once you realize fake is what you like.
And it's a lonesome feeling, one you can't deny.
This lonesome living's, all we can provide.
So if you need me is something you decide It's quite a feeling once you realize fake is what you like.
And it's lonesome feeling, one you can't deny.
This lonesome city's poised to rob you blind.
So cut your losses It's quite a feeling once you realize fake is what you like.
- Dream life, outcries, standby, allies Poolside, child-like, downside, goodbyes Sympathetic tones don't match a sympathetic lie - So darling don't leave, fix me - You're my only entrance I'm just looking for an exit from my - real life Me time - is my saving grace While I'm just looking for your face amongst the Deadbeats, back streets, stories, tell me Child brides, pigsties, thick ties, unwise Don't just hold each other back, I'm cleaning up my path So darling - don't leave, fix me - You're my only entrance I'm just looking for an exit from my - real life, meantime - It's my saving grace While I'm just looking for your face inside the crowd I'm so sorry, I apologize in advance We were never friends, I didn't mean to hurt you yet again I don't mean my cruelty It's just the poetry you were looking for So darling - don't leave, save me - You're my only exit I'm just looking for an entrance to my - real life meantime - It's my saving grace While I'm just looking for your face inside the crowd.
- This song is called Heartbeat.
Who am I to say I want you back? When you were never mine to give away.
I was waiting for a long, long time for you to feel the same.
Who are you to look at me like that? Is there something more you need to say? I haven't loved you in a long, long time, so why do I feel this way? - Can you hear my heartbeat? Please don't stand so close to me.
Can you hear my heartbeat still beating strong? - Maybe I'm ashamed to want you back.
Maybe I'm afraid you never stay.
Thought I hated you a long, long time.
That was my mistake.
I just can't pretend that nothing's changed.
Can you comprehend just what to say? If you break my heart a second time, I might never be the same.
- Can you hear my heartbeat? Please don't stand so close to me.
Can you hear my heartbeat still beating strong? - I haven't loved you in a long, long time.
Thought I hated you a long, long time.
If you break my heart one more time, I won't ever be the same.
- Can you hear my heartbeat? Please don't stand so close to me.
- Can you feel my heartbeat still beating strong? Can you hear my heartbeat? When you stand so close to me.
Can you hear my heartbeat still beating strong? Still beating strong.
Still beating strong.
- Thank you guys, very much.
We're JJamz.
This is going to be our last song.
We have a record out called Suicide Pact this song is also called Suicide Pact.
Thank you very much.
We'll see you soon.
We chased fame, we chased fortune We could barely catch our breath You looked great and I looked gorgeous We turned some heads and even broke some necks And it came time to take our lives - You turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing with the dead You turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing with the dead - All you had to do was simply follow through But you turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing, - dancing with the dead We tasted fame, we made our fortune It was stripped away, now memories long past Then you were tamed and I was tortured But like the pain I knew we wouldn't last And it came to time to take our lives - You turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing with the dead You turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing with the dead - All I asked of you was simply follow through - But you turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing, - dancing with the dead All you had to do was simply follow through All I asked of you Follow through Follow through, but - you turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing with the dead You turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing with the dead You turned your back on the suicide pact And left me dancing with the dead You turned your back on the suicide pact - And left me dancing, dancing with the dead Thank you guys.

Artist Bio

First things first. It's pronounced Juh-Jamz. Like you have a stutter.

JJAMZ. Why do we feel like we already know them? Is it because James is the lead guitarist for the always radio ready Maroon 5? Jason the drummer of indie institutions Rilo Kiley and Bright Eyes? Alex the singer/writer/guitarist from Phantom Planet and Mark Ronson's solo records? Michael a beloved musician/artist/designer? And Z the leader of LA girl gang The Like?

No? Not ringing any bells? Maybe it's because this is how you feel when you hear something at once fresh yet familiar. Like you've accidentally dialed up next year's radio. This is what happens when five Best Friends come together to play music for no other reason than the joy it brings and the refuge it provides. After years and years of playing in their own bands, to varying degrees of success (James has Grammys, Jason was once nominated for a Woodie), they realized the absurdity of never having joined forces, and set out to right that wrong.

The resulting effort is their debut album, Suicide Pact, an offering as honest and personal as you might expect from people that have had each other's backs (and occasionally been at each other's throats) for the last 10 years. Only friends this close could provide such a rewarding synthesis of disparate musical tastes, coupled with perilously revealing lyrics; it's as if Rumours were recorded by My Bloody Valentine, Fiona Apple sang "Heart of Glass", or Andrew W.K. wrote Saturday Night Fever. This mix of accessibility and surprise stands as JJAMZ' greatest asset. You knew that James had great guitar chops, but did you know he can make a racket? Jason is every indie fan's favorite drummerbut he loves disco? Alex is a classic front man, but he's also a consummate musical director, at home on every instrument. Michael writes beautiful, intimate song-poems with big choruses. As for Z well, whatever your preconceptions were of Z, you're only half rightor wrong.

One might think the album's morbid title suggests compositions suitable for seances and animal sacrifices, but that's sadly not the case. Listeners will find heart wrenched narratives chronicling the dreams and desires common to youth ("Never Enough", "Suicide Pact"), Club Jams for the Thinking Man ("Heartbeat", "Square One"), and fun, potential summer anthems ("LAX", "Cleverly Disguised") that will make people want to drive around topless (Their car's top, obviously. Stop blushing). In fact, if there were a dance club that played intelligent, musical, lyrically driven songs that you return to again and again, Suicide Pact might populate the entire playlist.

So there you have it. It's not the most unusual story. Best friends making music. Happens all the time. Yet, when listening to this collection of songs, you can't help but sense something else at play, something beyond the driving rhythms and lifting melodies. It becomes clear that this is as much a testament to their powerful songwriting as it is to their equally, if not more, powerful friendship. This band, this de facto family, has made a Suicide Pact. It also happens to be the name of their record.

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