JUNIOR BOYS – Begone Dull Care (2009)

Junior Boys - Begone Dull Care When last we left them (2006), Junior Boys had released So This Is Goodbye, a relaxed and groovy album that featured a surprising amount of songs (the stellar In The Morning and Like A Child come to mind immediately) ready for both counterculture clubs and hipster house parties alike. A lot of people heaped praise on The Knife’s Silent Shout that year, and while I don’t deny that the album has it’s share of great songs (We Share Our Mother’s Health, Like A Pen, and the eerily danceable title track), the album as a whole was too cold and sterile, while So This Is Goodbye was anything but. So, that was 2006. Now, time to bring us up to speed on 2009.

Enter Begone Dull Care, an album that has an awful lot to live up to, and which manages to occasionally hold its own against its predecessor, but which also suffers from a rather unusual flaw: musical restlessness. The songs on here don’t ever seem to coalesce into tangible, and they always seem to be shifting in one way or another. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but considering that the locked-in focus of So This Is Goodbye was one of the album’s greatest strengths, moving on to Begone Dull Care is, at the very least, a bit of an adjustment.

Which isn’t to say the band doesn’t ever succeed in their endeavors. The hypnotic Bits & Pieces is one of the band’s best songs, and works because it remains captivating despite its constantly evolving nature. Likewise Hazel works because it allows some of the ideas the band are working with time to settle into themselves, before moving on to something new or adding/subtracting something from them.

Overall, I’d rate this slightly higher than MSTRKRFT’s Fist of God. The material from there I like, I enjoy more than the material on Begone Dull Care, but there’s less of it (hence my abstract justification). So, there you go. Anyways, if you’re a fan of the band, or if you’ve been putting off grabbing that Fever Ray disc everyone’s talking about, I’d check Begone Dull Care

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