Word's Out

Blue Pyramid

OCTOBER 5, 1998
The Gone Jackals
Blue/Black Records
Review by: Bob Pierce

As much as I've tried to make "The Daily Vault" a friend to the 
independent artist, sometimes I don't quite look forward to checking out 
some of the releases I get in the mail. Some of them just seem to scream 
"bar band that wants to make good", and I try to put listening to those 
discs off as long as possible. (I know it's a terrible thing to admit, 
but when you've got the backlog that I've got in my in basket, some 
corners need to be cut.)

Then, there is Keith Karloff and The Gone Jackals. I have to admit I 
wasn't looking forward to listening to Blue Pyramid, but found myself at 
my "real" job at one o'clock in the morning listening to it... and 
wondering why the hell I hadn't popped this disc on earlier. Simply put, 
The Gone Jackals are no half-assed bar band, nor are they a throwback to 
the glory days of hard rock and heavy metal. Instead, they are a solid 
rock band that better be given a break pretty damned quick.

Vocalist/guitarist Karloff and his backing band - guitarist/vocalist 
Judd Austin, bassist R.D. Maynard and drummer/vocalist Trey Sabatelli - 
grind through twelve solid songs that help reaffirm even the biggest 
skeptic's faith in up-and-coming rock and roll. Repeated listens to Blue 
Pyramid only confirm stronger what you begin to suspect almost from the 
moment you push "play" for the first time: this disc's a winner.

From the opening notes of "Covering Hallowed Ground," The Gone Jackals 
create their own style of rock that lightly borrows from some of their 
forefathers without blatantly stealing riffs or attitudes. The resulting 
sound and songwriting is all their own, as a result. Tracks like "13X," 
"Evil Twin Sisters," "No Sign Of Rain" and "Bustin' A Move" are all 
tracks which will have you coming back for more almost the moment the 
disc ends.

You might be skeptical about the abilities of a rock band who features 
song titles like "Barrel Of Crabs" and "That Blows My Mind," but these 
songs are just as strong as the others mentioned. All the songs just 
seem to come together very well, and are well-performed. This is half 
the battle; the other half is keeping the listener interested throughout 
the disc. And while my attention occasionally drifted, for the most 
part, I was locked into what I was listening to.

Only at the end of the disc, on the title track, does the energy level 
seem to dip a bit - but this is a small point of contention out of this 
whole disc. Karloff, a veteran of the music scene, knows how to create a 
good song and execute it, though credit must be shared with his 
bandmates as well. Their voices are heard just as loudly through their 
instruments as Karloff's singing.

Blue Pyramid is not an album you would normally hear of or see on the 
store shelves for an impulse buy. But if Karloff and crew get the right 
breaks (and I hope they come soon for this band), that all might change. 
Don't be surprised if by this time next year The Gone Jackals are, at 
the very least, holding a solid support act status on a major tour. God 
knows they're good enough, and Blue Pyramid proves that... and more.

© 1998 Robert Pierce. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not 
be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual 
property of Blue/Black Records, and is used for references purposes 



SONG: "Business As Usual"
LABEL: Blueblack
MEMBERS: Keith Karloff (vocals, guitar), R.D. Maynard (bass), Trey Sabatelli (drums, vocals), Judd Austin (guitar, vocals).
PRODUCED BY: Keith Karloff
ORIGIN: San Francisco
Also heard on Rock TuneUp #196
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:  Have you checked the children?  The Gone Jackals may already be lurking in your house!  Some of you have probably even been grooving on their hard-nosed, post punk hi-jinx and don't even know it.  They've infiltrated some 400,000 households worldwide via the fiber-optic highway to hell (aka your computer) with their last release, "Bone To Pick".  That album won the prestigious PC Gamer Magazine's Soundtrack Of The Year Award as the music for LucasArts' hit PC game "Full Throttle".  "Business As Usual", from The Gone Jackals' latest release, "Blue Pyramid", sounds as if John Kay from Steppenwolf parked his Harley onstage and joined The Smithereens on "Blood & Roses".  "Business As Usual" is an exciting, guitar-driven, pure-rock fest showcasing the raw energy of lead vocalist Keith Karloff.

Full Throttle


"A lot of movie soundtrack compilers would eat their hearts out over how good FULL THROTTLE's soundtrack is" - Computer Gaming World 

"The Gone Jackals' wild rock score is hard enough to melt the ink form the tattoos of real live bikers" - Electronic Musician

"Rockin' game music that doesn't suck by a band called the Gone Jackals" - Strategy Plus

 "Along the way, you're treated to a terrific soundtrack from biker band GONE JACKALS". - Entertainment Weekly

"The Gone Jackals possessed the right sound and attitude to bring the essential hard rock integrity to FULL THROTTLE" - Multimedia Musician

"Steppenwolf-esque" - Computer Player

"It's the best soundtrack I've heard, hands-down" - Editor's Choice P.C. Gamer

"C.B.S Television has also picked up
on The song "Born Bad" from 'BONE TO PICK' in their NASH BRIDGES "Baby Boy" episode"