The Jigsaw Seen 

"What About Christmas?" (vibro-phonic recordings)

Like the Beatles, the Beach Boys and Love before them, The Jigsaw Seen thrives on pushing boundaries. Together for nearly ten years, the Southern California band pens colorful lyrics and papers their music with a wide array of instruments. Not only are their original songs fascinating, but their choice of covers also tend to be unique, as they've rendered everybody from Tony Bennett to the Pretty Things. The latest effort from the Jigsaw Seen is a five track EP called "What About Christmas?" There are two different takes of the title cut. One is an electric version that swells with perfectly plush production tactics and the moaning sound of a mellotron. The other recording of "What About Christmas?" is acoustic based, and is equally compelling in its stripped down format. A dark edge penetrates the number as it explodes with naked emotions. The three remaining cuts on the album are live treatments of the Velvet Underground's slow and spooky "Jesus," the intensely brooding "First Of May" by the Bee Gees and "Sleigh Ride," a shaking and baking Ventures instrumental. The Jigsaw Seen are experts at blending psychedelic textures with massive pop hooks. Complex structures, paired with radiant choruses additionally characterize the band's novel vision.  Beverly Paterson