The Just Joans

The Private Memoirs and Confessions of the Just Joans

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After honing their twee-informed indie pop on over a decade's worth of limited releases, sibling-led six-piece the Just Joans made their Fika Recordings debut with You Might Be Smiling Now in 2017. It revealed a keen balance of sweetness and sardonicism on tracks with titles like "No Longer Young Enough" and "You Make Me Physically Sick (Let's Start Having Children)." The Glaswegians return with another consistently catchy set of ironic pop on The Private Memoirs and Confessions of the Just Joans. It kicks off with the midtempo Ramones reference in name only, "Hey Ho, Let's Not Go, " which begins with David Pope, who's associated with an electric guitar-and-horn riff, as the Boy who proposes staying home ("The TV's good and the weather's shite"). Accompanied by a sparer arrangement and acoustic guitar, Katie Pope responds with the Girl's wistful remembrances of when they used to go out every weekend, before the song brings their parts together. These types of musical references and division between gender roles continue throughout the track list as they make cutting references to bisexual (and vegan) friends while continuing to struggle in their own relationships on songs like "My Undying Love for You Is Starting to Die" and "Another Doomed Relationship." It may be best not to deconstruct the wit at play here, however, and just enjoy the ear-pleasing rotation of boppy and bittersweet tunes, including their simplified variations on synth pop ("My Undying Love for You Is Starting to Die"), orchestral teen pop ("Dear Diary, I Died Again Today"), and bouncy retro rock ("Who Does Susan Think She Is?").

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