Release Date: May 29, 2020
Record label: Merge
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Pop, New Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Alternative Dance
Jade Hairpins is the work of two members of the band Fucked Up, and if anyone is looking to them for the same kind of fiery punk drama, they are barking up the wrong tree. While it's true that Jonah Falco drums for Fucked Up and Mike Haliechuk plays guitar and writes songs, here Falco takes over the guitar and vocal duties while Haliechuk handles the bass and the band is influenced by highly danceable post-punk, rambunctious indie pop, and post-Postcard Orange Juice. Their debut album, Harmony Avenue, bounces joyously from bracing, highly infectious guitar pop songs like "J Terrapin" and "Mary Magazine" to stripped-down, danceable songs ("Don't Break My Devotion," "Post No Bill") that come across like a snappier, more focused LCD Soundsystem thanks to the elastic grooves, burbling synths, and Falco's declamations.
There were no further details about the band available online, but the label were curiously promoting the latest Fucked Up record released on the same day. Now the band - made up of Jonah Falco and Mike Haliechuk of Fucked Up - are ready to claim their name with debut album Harmony Avenue. The band deal in wonky power-pop and post-punk, all braying guitars and off-hand lyricisms which embody both characters of the band's creation as well as their own personal rhetoric.
"Overthinking isn't really what I'm born to be," states Jonah Falco on 'Harmony Avenue's opening track, the punning 'J Terrapin'. It's as close as you'll get to a manifesto on Jade Hairpins' debut album, and serves as useful guidance for interpreting the 80s-tinged luminescence on display - if at times it feels like playacting, or even a compilation album rather than the work of one band, that's at least part of the point. A compilation album, you say? Well, yeah.