Jake Shears

Jake Shears

Jake Shears will always love the campy excesses of ’70s pop. His mix of gutsy soul belting and over-the-top Bee Gees falsetto has been the defining feature of Scissor Sisters, the tongue-in-cheek disco ensemble he cofounded nearly 20 years ago. On his solo bow, Shears doesn’t exactly tone down the “Nights on Broadway” melodrama—but he does find some swinging, roots-rocking, and psychedelic new twists, perhaps due to relocating from New York to New Orleans. Assisted by the horns of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and the guitars of My Morning Jacket, the album shows off Shears’ playfully rough side with the sex-obsessed funk of “S.O.B.” and the hard-riffing goof “Big Bushy Mustache,” while “Everything I’ll Ever Need” and “Palace in the Sky” strip away his kitschy artifice for surprisingly affecting Beatles-style ballads.

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