Juliana Hatfield

American Laundromat Records, 2021

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler


On her 18th (!!!) album, Juliana Hatfield returns with ten new songs clocking in at just over 34 minutes long. The album is the latest in a long line of DIY projects. This sees her hooking up with Jed Davis and creating a 2021 style of her classic indie rock. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Opening track, “The Shame Of Love” is long and rambling and doesn’t really go anywhere. It’s a disappointing way to kick things off. “Gorgon” is a good enough track that lifts above mediocrity, but the cynicism of the ‘90s really kicks in on “Nightmary,” which is one of the worst tracks here. It feels like a bored writer just getting out their dislikes about life with younger people and it’s like, please move on and do something more exciting.

This album is bland and dull; that’s all there is to it. Hatfield been at this for over 35 years and while she hasn’t run out of ideas lyrically, musically it is another story. There’s barely anything here to separate tracks from one another. What’s the main difference between “Splinter” and “Suck It Up?” Answer is: I haven’t a clue. The lame New Wave drum machines really don’t help efforts as they tend to overwhelm the rest of the proceedings.

This is incredibly boring and makes me want to listen to “Universal Heart Beat” again because that is a much better song than most of what’s here. Closing track “Torture” is the closest thing to something that I actually sort of latched onto. It bears the most resemblance to the music of her past.

Back in the day, Hatfield was capable of much better than this and this kind of feels like she’s phoning it in on certain tracks, which is always sad to hear. Do yourself something better and go listen to some old Blake Babies.

Rating: D+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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