“YmmiJ” is the 3rd album from my friends , Brazilian Melodic Hard Rockers Still Living ! Renato Costa a very good friend by now and we’ve been talking a lot about this album since day one.
It almost feels like I’m a very very small part of all of this ?!
The new album marks a new step for the band as with this album the band created a concept about a man called Jimmy. (hence the album’s title, his name backwards “YmmiJ”)
— Jimmy is about a man trapped in his lifestyle full of alcohol and drugs, fighting his own demons. He’s sitting in a bar reflecting his live through a mirror !
Throughout the album some other characters also will appear as they are, Jane and Stranger (this last one seems something like a hallucination).
For those already familiar with the band notice also the slight change of style in their music.
All songs are wrapped with infectious hooks and an overall 80’s vibe that will appeal to any lover of classic melodic hard rock.
Renato’s singing has improved very much with this album because he sings in a lower key that on the previous albums ! The album has also some spoken dialogues that assemble the songs.
This small detail gives the story that little extra , it gave me the idea that I was part of it. Nicely done !
“Reign of Pills” opens the album nicely where the leading character begins to reveal his tormented life, a melodic hard rock song full of sweet guitar riffs, nice keyboards and a catchy chorus. Renato Costa immediatly shines here with his more tenor sounding voice.
“On the Edge” is driven by sharp edgy guitars and also ‘Call of the Night’ is an energetic rocker with an amazing guitar solo in it !
“Dusty Blue Shadow” returns to the familiar melodic rock style with a catchy chorus where Jimmy is talking to ‘Stranger’ !
“Listen to me” are spoken words followed by,
“The Man I’ve Become” that has a clear American rock vibe and great keyboards. This is one of my favorites on the album.
“King of Nothing” has a more groovy rhythm , especially at the end it has that Black Sabbath feel , and darker lyrics.
“Haunted” is an amazing ballad with fine clean guitars creating the atmosphere. Here Renato Costa shows what an amazing voice he has.
“Peace or Pieces ?” is a midtempo AOR song with a more European touch that opens with classic style guitars.
“Who are You” is spoken again and followed by ‘Mr. Mirror’ , a great ballad with piano as main instrument where the character “Stranger” is introduced.
This is another one of my favorite songs on the album !!
“I.M. Jimmy” is again a rocker with that European touch in it !
“Jane” is spoken conversation between Jimmy and Jane followed by,
“Cult of the Rough Awakening” , an energetic hard rock song where you can clearly hear the frustration of Jimmy.
“In the Dark” is the final short spoken interlude with Jane before closing the album with the very melodic and instrumental song “As Shallow as It Gets”.
The European version of the album has one more bonus track on it with “Redemption” , an amazing ballad accompanied by piano.
So overall “YmmiJ” is a very solid record mixing hooks & melodies with a nice concept story that you surely will enjoy.
A huge step forward for the band for sure ! I would like to give extra credits to Eduardo Holanda for his overall excellent guitar performance ,
and of caurse Renato and the rest of the band for their amazing work with this new album !
01 – Reign of Pills
02 – On the Edge
03 – Call of the Night
04 – Dusty Blue Shadow
05 – Listen to Me !
06 – The Man I’ve Become
07 – King of Nothing
08 – Haunted
09 – Peace or Pieces?
10 – Who Are You?
11 – Mr. Mirror
12 – I.M. Jimmy
13 – Jane
14 – Cult of the Rough Awakening
15 – In the Dark / As Shallow as It Gets
16 – Redemption (bonus track european version)