It takes guts to lay bare your soul, and it takes bravery to tell your story through a sonic avenue, with lyrics that are poetic enough to change perceptions. With The Record, an album from a trio of musicians under the moniker Boygenuis, the lyrics are studded with realism and rawness and are profound in scope and clarity. The band have reshaped their destinies with this album. It’s radical and original and it’s easy to hang onto every word.
Seasoned musicians Julien Baker, Pheobe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus make up this guitar driven 3 piece, that have thrown down the gauntlet, offering songs for the disenchanted travellers, who feel despondent from world problems, the lack of hope, and the loss of dreams. The band knows they’re icons now too, suitable queens with fists raised.
Musically, the trio manages to create pulsating, forward-thinking songs that summon up images which aren’t always sweetly delivered, and on The Record, the band’s debut album, they have sucker-punched normal ideals and rallied against the status quo while keeping their cool. This speaks volumes about the act, their musical forays, and their desires for change.
The Record is also a body of work that permeates with style, cutting deeply into modern topics, but it’s the emotion the album carries that makes it different. The enigmatic trio who have designed such grandiosity have their own personal battles. We all have our own battles to contend with in a world unkempt, but the band are a force to be reckoned with, putting it all out there through an LP they’ve always wanted to create.
Lyrically, The Record is story-driven and evocative, captivating in its process, pushing the written word to a level many musicians can’t reach. It may sound audacious, but there are plenty of bands and artists out there that don’t spend enough time on writing that stellar line. Boygenuis, however, has placed every word concisely and coherently.
The trio nod to their own woes when singing these songs, biting their tongues at intervals, and then raging against the hierarchies and rulers of the world. This is a theme that runs through the band’s DNA, and they certainly don’t take shit, that’s for sure.
With The Record, the band has worked heavily on details too. From the opening song $20 they’ve catered for the poets with these cutting segments.
‘’Mama told me that it doesn’t run on wishes
But that I should have fun,
Pushing the flowers that come up
Into the front of a shotgun
So many hills to die on’’
These lyrics are cutting, and profoundly engaging, telling us that the band does feel the wrath of pain and the gloom of darkness. $20 also shows the guitar presence is there as a soft underpinning.
Not Strong Enough has become the main anthem of the album. A sobering song, though it’s a gift of pure songwriting and creativity. The track shows lyrics which are hard-hitting and slightly unnerving.
The way I am
Not strong enough to be your man
I tried, I can’t
Stop staring at the ceiling fan and
Spinning out about things that haven’t happened
Breathing in and out
Not Strong Enough portrays a dysfunctional relationship it seems and love that has rotted down to the core. The structure of this track is sublime, and the arrangements are all tuned in well.
Revolution 0 conveys the desire to be free of sickness and mental disorder. The band has created a sombre inclusion here, and one of the most significant songs on the record. Musically, it has layers and substance, lyrically it delivers emotion.
I don’t wanna die, that’s a lie
But I’m afraid to get sick
I don’t know what that is
You wanted a song
So it’s gonna be a short one
Wish I wasn’t so tired, but I’m tired
Deeply poignant, the song delivers intensity and a story which is timely, proving the band is hurting while balancing hope and fame.
Satanist borrows from the darkness indeed, a song which claws at sanity. Boygenuis show a different side, and they don’t seem fazed by it.
Will you be a Satanist with me?
Mortgage off your soul to buy your dream
Vacation home in Florida
The collateral the Devil’s repossessin’
from me Tryin’ to score some off-brand ecstasy
With these songs, Boygenuis have elevated to the echelons of music, and they have garnered a fanbase which follows them around the world. It shows, if you put your heart and soul into something, it can pay off, and The Record is a staple now for the disenfranchised looking for peace and stability in their lives.
It isn’t medicine or a potion, this album, but music can heal.