Jesse Malin & The St. Marks Social: Love it to Life (Side One Dummy, 2010)
Jesse Malin returns after a small break and shows that his rock’n’roll heart is as strong as ever and that he can still write wonderful songs. Jesse Malin might well be another graduate from the Springsteen school of songwriting, but he has skipped a few classes and made some personal field trips to underground rock & punk clubs that are covered with the pictures of people like Johnny Thunders, Nikki Sudden and Stiv Bators. The new album Love it to Life is a great return to form after a little pointless cover album On Your Sleeve. This is a damn fine rock’n’roll record that has more heart than a baseball court full of american idols. Just listen to this and there’s no need for replacements. A really strong album from start to finish, but if I need to say one bad thing, it’s the fact that maybe none of the songs are as mindblowing as some earlier favourites like Black Haired Girl for example. St. Marks Sunset does rank pretty close, but so far it looks like I don’t need to make changes for my imaginary top 3 Jesse Malin songs list. However, this doesn’t change the fact that Jesse Malin is still the real deal and Love it to Life is a truly enjoyable album.