Jebediah are one of Australia’s most beloved bands, with over two decades of hooky tunes and critically-acclaimed records under their belts.
They’re returning to the stage for a special Good Friday show at Chelsea Heights Hotel in Melbourne’s South East on Thursday March 29 (followed by a show on the Gold Coast’s Parkwood Tavern on April 1), and to celebrate this fact — and that the following day is Good Friday, and therefore you don’t have to get up in the morning — we’ve assembled a primer to Jebediah’s recording career, taking in the highlights and some under-appreciated gems alike.
Without further ado, here’s the best of Jebs – but if we’ve missed anything out, let us know in the comments!
Twitch (EP) 1996
These were the first songs the band ever recorded — smashed out quickly in March after winning the National Band Comp. a few months earlier — and released through Sony subsidiary Murmur in August. The EP performed well in their native W.A. where it topped the ARIA Charts. None of these songs would make their debut album, but a number of them still enter the band’s setlist every now and then.
Highlights: Tracksuit, Mr. Masonic
Slightly Odway (1997)
The band’s debut album was crammed with fuzzy pop singles; literally any song from this album could have been a hit single, and a number of them were — at least in alternative radio terms — with ‘Leaving Home’, ‘Jerks Of Attention’, ‘Teflon, ‘Lino’, and ‘Benedict’ receiving heavy triple j airplay, which helped propel the album towards double-Platinum certification. But it was the tender ‘Harpoon’ that saw the band display hidden depths, hint at a future level of maturity, and reach an early creative peak – even if the song does owe quite the melodic debt to ‘In the Morning’ by Built To Spill.
Highlights: Harpoon, Jerks Of Attention, Puckdefender, Leaving Home.
Of Someday Shambles (1999)
The band’s second album saw them stretching out stylistically without losing the fuzzy pop gleam that had served them so well. In reality, this was the band pushing out in every direction they’d pointed towards on their debut: ‘Trapdoor’ takes the punk blast of ‘Blame’ and amps up the unhinged distortion; ‘Feet Touch The Ground’ surpasses the epic scope of ‘Harpoon’, and ‘Animal’ is a spikier ‘Leaving Home’. And ‘Love At Last’ is just a sublime pop gem. Although the album wasn’t as commercially successful as their debut, this was more a sign of flagging CD sales around the turn of the century, rather than any dip in popularity.
Highlights: Did You Really?, Love At Last, Star Machine, Animal.
On the right day — usually a breezy afternoon when the sun is out — the third Jebs album is their best. From bouncy intro ‘N.D.C.’, through to the baggy swagger of ‘Number Three’, and the truly massive ‘Yesterday When I Was Brave’, this album is a masterclass in how to expand your sound without alienating your fan-base or betraying all that makes your band great. ‘October’ and ‘Country Holiday Song’ jangle like great Aussie pop from the ’80s, while ‘Eveready’ and ‘Gangsta’ are twin sides of the same manic attack.
Highlights: If You Want It, Yesterday When I Was Brave, Number Three
Braxton Hicks (2004)
After completing their three-album deal with Sony, Jebediah formed their own label (through which they also released the excellent Blueline Medic record) and made their fourth album, the confident, warm Braxton Hicks. The superstitious may baulk at naming such an album after false labour contractions, but this was a confident birth all around, with lead single ‘First Time’ even hitting the Top 50 ARIA Singles chart.
Highlights: No Sleep, First Time, More Alone
After seven long years, Jebediah released ‘She’s Like A Comet’, the first taste from their Kosciuszko album. To the surprise of everyone involved, ‘She’s Like A Comet’ became the band’s most successful radio single in history, crossing over to commercial stations, just missing the ARIA Top 10 (hitting #11), and causing such a stir that the band’s new label Dew Process had to push the release of the album forward to meet demand. Luckily the album itself wasn’t a rush job, having been crafted over five years between Bob Evans duties, and containing numerous winning tunes — from the skipping stone melody of ‘Control’ to the intense ‘Battlesong’. The album reached #6 on the ARIA Charts. Jebs were back!
Highlights: Lost My Nerve, Control, She’s Like A Comet
Jebediah play a special show Good Friday Eve gig at Chelsea Heights Hotel in Melbourne’s South East on Thursday March 29, and tickets are on sale now. Gold Coast fans can catch them playing the Parkwood Tavern on April 1, and grab their tix here.