MR 379-2LP MR 379-2LP

Munster Records present a reissue of Marc Jonson's Years, originally released in 1972. More than four decades after its original release, a minor album by an obscure artist from the Vanguard catalog is finally reissued on vinyl. There are recordings on the Vanguard label by more famous artists than Marc Jonson, and discs that far outsold Years (1972) -- but this collection has stood the test of time. Years is not only a stunning debut, but a harbinger of the promise of a young artist. "Rainy Dues" kicks off Years with a tersely honest statement and proceeds to expound on that with a series of observations and claims about a relationship whose literal nature is nebulous but whose emotional reality is dense. "Mary" is a musical sequel to the opener which treats with wonderful lyrics as well as powerfully evocative singing. "Mother Jane" remains a mystery after 30-plus years, but you don't need to understand it to enjoy it -- the pondering is a prize in itself. Side A ends with "Fly", an existential lament depicting alienation from others and self. Listen for the additional voices coming in near the end of the song on the word "fly" with a simultaneous harp flourish. "A Long Song" is the metaphoric and literal centerpiece of the album, falling precisely at the midway point. It's sweet and tender, with a narrator sure of himself. The brief "Autopsy", with its five lines, sung twice, carries a hefty poignancy with a melancholic tune. "Return To The Relief" is a lyrical and musical adventure. The carnival ride of this song finishes with a musical reference to Jackie DeShannon's 1969 popular single "Put A Little Love in Your Heart". "Munich" is the only song on the album which feels "dated" in any way -- one can hear the influence of "Revolution 9" from The Beatles' White Album (1968). The title could obliquely refer to the hostage taking at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Germany -- the havoc of that event mirrored by the fragmented song. The final track is "The Tredmill" which features a constrained and dulcet voice singing in front of a muted piano, interpolated with occasional drum. In Years, Marc Jonson deftly inserts brilliant production values to songs already possessing beautiful melodies and poetic lyricism. Presented in facsimile artwork and pressed on 180 gram vinyl.