Greg Jones is continuing to prove himself a boy wonder of the Northern Cal underground. Releasing music under his G JONES moniker for the past six years, the Santa Cruz native has been formulating glitched-out, dub-heavy trap productions that take listeners into the deepest parts of their minds.
Since bursting onto the dance music world in 2012, he’s received support from big names like Zeds Dead, DJ Shadow, and Pretty Lights and has collaborated with everyone from The Widdler, Bleep Bloop, EPROM, and Bassnectar.
So it’s hard to believe that Jones is just now releasing his debut long form project, THE INEFFABLE TRUTH, out now on his very own imprint Illusory Records.
And that’s exactly what it is — truth. Truth too great to be described in any actual words, to be exact.
Having already released tracks in “Understanding The Possibility,” “Time,” “In Your Head,” and “That Look In Your Eye,” he’s been teasing the album since June. Still, the wait feels like forever to long time fans of the artist, despite Jones being pretty forthcoming with fans over his painstaking creative process via his socials.
“I finished writing The Ineffable Truth around May 2018, but the musical universe the album exists in has kept expanding and expanding since then,” says Jones of the project.
He’d been working on the album for over a year now in order to carefully muster up the perfect encapsulation of wildly innovative sound. And to say it was well worth the wait would be the understatement of the year.
It’s diverse and diligent, intricate and convoluted, and yet easy and effortless in its simplicity. Above all, it’s absolutely stunning. Filled with 11 solo originals — something that was important to him — the album is a complex mosaic of composite sounds and genres, that it’s hard to make sense of, and even harder to explain, and that’s exactly why it will leave fans and listeners completely speechless.
“The process of writing this album was the most intensely cathartic and life affirming experience I’ve ever had. So many moments of profound joy and realization. I hope every person gets to experience something similar in their lifetime.” – Greg Jones
From the outset, the album already feels like a nostalgic storyline. Indeed, he pulls on sound samples from his two of his previously teased tracks, “Understanding the Possibility” and “That Look In Your Eye.” So the album’s first track, dubbed “222/Unknowable,” gives listeners an uncanny sense of déjà vu right off the bat. Jones’ intention was to catapult listeners into his world by giving them a feeling of ease and affability.
It also forms “the book end for the album,” as Jones reveals to Billboard Dance, before going on to explain that he wrote the leading track right after he wrote the ending track, “Forgotten Dreams.” “[They] actually play nicely into each other if you play the album again after ‘Forgotten Dreams’ ends,” he continues.
Both tracks play with changing tempos and the same light-hearted synth pattern. When the beat finally does come in, they melt away in the end like slipping into a dream. It’s a feeling that leaves listeners with an idea that they have almost grasped some abstract vision, and then it completely slips away.
A standout single on the album is “Soundtrack to the Machine.” It’s a hard-hitting track that begins with a stream-of-consciousness-type quote, where disjointed ideas just come and go, but eventually form a deeper level thought. This is the point when the album begins to feel like pure philosophy. Radio silence quickly gives way to heavy synth patterns, leaving the listener with only their thoughts.
“I don’t think that you can take much credence to what I say /
because the shifting patterns of the things I feel and see around me /
I do not know what part of what reality /
again… uh… I… uh… this feeling comes over me /
almost like the singing of angels… or something /
I think it’s the soundtrack to the machine.”
At the album’s midpoint, Jones begins to bring listeners back up again with the soothing, ambient track, “Everything All At Once.” Harmonious chords, angelic vocal samples, and rising frequencies build toward an 80s-synth soundscape that sounds like it could be out of Stranger Things, along with wind-chiming synths that fade away in shimmering obscurity.
“I am cutting stems of synth and vocal parts for many songs to allow for live manipulation and practicing playing certain parts on keyboard. Plus doing some sound design/exploration live and generally building in moments that allow for a level of added nuance and improvisation my sets haven’t seen before.” – Greg Jones
Jones says he’ll one day want to incorporate the song into his live act with a piano.
Another grounding track on the album is “Iridescent Leaves Floating Downstream,” which Jones says is dedicated to “an intensely life affirming and reassuring moment that [he] will never forget.” The song is bright and ethereal, before getting energetic and downright rambunctious — drawing up mental images of a fall landscape as yellow and red leaves fall onto a winding creek somewhere on the countryside. One cannot help but become self-reflexive in this moment.
When it come to his long-awaited debut album, it’s safe to say that G JONES has certainly done his due diligence.
In its entirety, THE INEFFABLE TRUTH is sophisticated, bewildering, and so absolutely mind-boggling that it will hit you in the face like a freight train. There’s so many moving parts and they all come together seamlessly for a perplexing and well put-together sonic storyline.
Now he’s embarked on his live album-accompanying tour with a whole crew of his buddies — everyone from Bleep Bloop, Charlesthefirst, Chee, and Honeybee to Truth, Stylust, Tsuruda, Wollymammoth, and Yheti. It’s a supporting talent list that reads more like a bass music festival, to be sure.
“This show is by far the most ambitious live performance I’ve ever done and I really can’t wait to show everyone.”
But it’s G JONES’ ground-breaking album material which will ultimately catch attendees, release them back into reality with sound mind and a renewed sense of spirit. He’s even revealed a little bit about what to expect,
“The live show I’m building now consists entirely of original music, including a ton of IDs that can sort of be understood as being part of the extended “ineffable truth” sonic realm, and also alternate versions of album tracks and new versions of a few older tunes.”
When speaking of THE INEFFABLE TRUTH and this new chapter that Greg Jones is embarking on with the project, one thing is certain: Greg Jones is proving himself more than just a golden boy of the bass music underground. He’s a supreme ruler in his own right.
Listen to the full album and see if G JONES is hitting your city below.