Considering the widespread acclaim that 2011’s The Audio Guide to Happiness Vol. I (and 2013’s Vol. 2) brought JOLLY, it’s not surprising that the New York progressive rock quartet has been working non-stop to produce its proper fourth studio effort, Family. What is a bit unexpected, though, is the manner in which the band is promoting it. In addition to releasing the first single from the new record, “Ava”, the group recently completed an off-the-wall cartoon entitled “JOLLY Kills Steven Wilson”. Packed with self-referential (and self-deprecating) humor involving JOLLY, Wilson, and a couple other surprise icons, the clip is sure to amuse anyone looking for some oddball genre antics.
Of the video, drummer Louis Abramson says that the foursome “decided to pay homage and show out love to the prog world in the best way we know how—by making fun of it… we do believe that people will see our nonsense as an act of love. Any fan of JOLLY knows that Steven Wilson is a huge influence on us.” Abramson also notes that “there is a surprising amount of truth in [this] portrayal of JOLLY”, adding that they plan on producing more episodes to poke fun at “every aspect of prog rock, from Neal Morse to Periphery… our aim is to show the world that the only thing it takes to make quality content is heart”.
Beyond the entertainment aspect, Abramson also hopes the cartoon proves that “if you put your heart into something… you’ve got all the tools you need. We hope that we could inspire other bands to think outside the box and to engage their fans in more unique ways in this new age of digital content”.
As for Family, it’s being funded partially by contributions to the group’s Patreon page, so fans are encouraged to head over to it and show some love. The songs from record will be unveiled one at a time, and patrons will receive “all sorts of perks”. For instance, anyone who signs up now will get the first three songs off of Family, as well as a bonus B-side and an alternative version.
Finally, Abramson wants JOLLY followers to know that “everything we do is out of love. Love for our fans, for the community, and for each other. In this screwed up music business, we are determined to find a path allows us to keep making quality content for our fans. We also hope we could lay some foundation for other artists to follow. JOLLY loves you”.