It's so important to have something meaningful to say, in the current music industry, where often the urgency of "having" to release a new album to make the fans happy as fast as possible, it may result as a counterproductive kind of a move, for an artist.

JJ Grey & The Mofro have undoubtedly not a problem with that, because they know that quality always pays dividends, no matter when they decide to make another album. Although it might have taken almost a decade, for the Florida-based collective, to release a new record of a certain high standard that could aptly follow the magnitude of a record like their 2015 Ol' Glory, that time has not been wasted in vain at all by the JJ Grey & The Mofro, given the excellent outcome.

Olustee, JJ Grey & The Mofro's new album is due to be released in few days time via Alligator Records and it is a record of true breathtaking beauty in each of its musical aspect.

John Higginbotham, aka JJ Grey, is notoriously an artist that does everything by heart, especially when it comes to his songs and their meanings and in the case of Olustee, the American singer/songwriter has entirely written, arranged and produced the album by himself, an album that incorporates wonderfully the many artistic talents of one of the most skilled and intense singers and songwriters of the last quarter of a century of American music in its entirety.

The collective's new record is an authentic sonic feast on so many levels. JJ Grey & The Mofro managed to encapsule, into the 11 songs part of Olustee, almost a century of American Music history, through songs that travel across alleyways of R&B, Soul, Americana, Funk and 70's Psychedelia with such classy arrangements, each of them carefully sonically structured and superbly played by Grey and his band of brothers, in a record that includes also a special appearance of the Budapest Symphony Orchestra.

From a vocal aspect, JJ Grey has never sounded as great as he sounds on Olustee. His range and quality of delivery is absolutely outstanding and so incredibly measured, on this record, as amply manifested on songs like The Sea, On A Breeze, Free High and Deeper Than Belief, among others, where the Jacksonville-based singer/songwriter's voice shines at its brightest, in our website's opinion.

As a songwriter, JJ Grey has always been historically a highly sensitive and inspired lyricist and this album is no exception. 

Dedicated by Grey & The Mofro to the beloved memory of Jesse Aratow, someone that has been part of the collective's entourage for so many years who sadly and prematurely passed away, Olustee touches themes related to the calming power that the ocean plays on Grey's everyday life, from where the title of the album's opening tune takes inspiration from (The Sea), fatherhood (Deeper Than Belief), love for life (Top Of The World, Wonderland, Starry Night) and the joy to feel alive every day (Olustee, On A Breeze) with such highly impressive lyrical depth and honesty, emotional connection and spirituality, qualities that are getting rarer and rarer to find, in the contemporary music scene.

Olustee is, unquestionably, a compositional, vocal and musical Zenith for JJ Grey & The Mofro's career. A record where melody, vocals and songwriting meet altogether in a superb artistic combustion able to light the fire of every living soul, through the 11 songs included in the album, with such effortless grace, enormous talent and musicianship. A record of incredible intensity and beauty that should naturally be up there to be considered, in our view, for next year's Grammy. An absolute masterpiece.




Olustee is due to be released on 23rd February and it is available to be purchased via Alligator Records