Love Junk [Deluxe Edition]

The Pursuit Of Happiness

Universal Music Canada, 2018

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler


Here we have one of the most underrated indie/college rock records of the late ‘80s. The Pursuit Of Happiness, hailing from the Great White North, had a major hit with “I’m An Adult Now” but that’s just one of the landmarks to be heard on this disc. This is a newly remastered, double disc 30th anniversary collection that right from the get go immediately takes you back to a time when alternative rock was actual rock music.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Opening track “Hard To Laugh” is one of the greatest songs of the ‘80s. Lamenting a breakup, frontman/guitarist/lyricist Moe Berg takes the well-worn theme to task about how it still sucks when someone breaks your heart. “I’m An Adult Now” is still the great track it always was but it’s been outshone by “Hard To Laugh” and “She’s So Young.” Both of these tracks benefit greatly from the supreme harmonies of guitarist Kris Abbott and background singer Leslie Stanwyck; when these two come together to sing, one can almost feel the hair standing up on their necks, it’s that powerful. “Beautiful White” has been lamented as the album’s shining moment and it is definitely powerful in that aspect. The way Berg’s lyrics flow together almost peg him as a poet laureate. On “She’s So Young,” the way the vocals blend together is enough to melt even the Grinch’s heart.

Produced with a heavy crunch by Todd Rundgren, this is a lot different than the other hard rock/alternative coming out of Canada at the time which was heavily cheesy and glossy. The second disc is full of outtakes, live stuff, and original single versions of “She’s So Young” and “I’m An Adult Now.” Some of this material doesn’t have enough power to really be notable, except for “Wake Up And Smell Cathy,” which was an album castoff and has the same type of power as everything on the original disc.

It’s hard to believe it’s been 30 years since this was initially released and it still has the same type of power and lyrical force that it did when originally released.

Rating: A-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


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