John Hermann

Just Ain't Right

BY Shain ShapiroPublished Dec 1, 2004

Widespread Panic are one of those bands that are so powerful at carving out their own specific and recognisable sound, despite playing generally the same exact music for 15 years. Instead of growing outward and encompassing more styles over time, they simply stick to the same syllabus and have become one of the best teachers of emotive, blues-y Southern rock. Unfortunately, the band is on hiatus. So, the respective members of the band have ventured off to record solo projects, most recently keyboardist John "JoJo” Hermann with his debut, Just Ain’t Right. Incorporating the help of guitarist and drummer Luther and Cody Dickenson from the brilliant North Mississippi Allstars, Hermann has simply created just another Widespread Panic album. While all the tunes are penned by Hermann, who rarely contributes in Widespread Panic, every one of them could be full band collaboration. Widespread’s lyrically ambiguous mysticism, hovering melodies drenched with crunchy Southern blues, and slow New Orleans funk and guitar driven rock dominate Just Ain’t Right, illustrating that from start to finish, this album has Panic juice smeared all over it. This is just another testimonial for the argument that there is no need for originality when the tried and tested is already poignant and engaging. While I would still prefer putting on Till the Medicine Takes, this will do for now.

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