Junior Boys Big Black Coat

Junior BoysBig Black Coat
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Just because you haven't heard from Junior Boys in four and a half years doesn't mean you haven't heard them. Since the release of 2011's It's All True, the duo of Jeremy Greenspan and Matt Didemus have kept their hands in a multitude of projects, both releasing solo material while the former worked on albums for Jessy Lanza and Caribou. This may be why Big Black Coat, their fifth LP, sounds so ambitious.
 
Over 11 tracks and 50 minutes, the Hamilton duo create compact and unhurried works that reflect the musical simplicity and approachable feel found on their 2004 debut, Last Exit. Citing early Detroit techno as an influence, Greenspan allows steely, skeletal backbeats to shape each track, focusing much more on structured vocal rhythms than rubbery melodies. What makes Big Black Coat truly remarkable, though, is the duo's ability to retain that intimate live feel they've become known for, as Greenspan's voice acts as a sort of sample on tracks like "Over It," "Big Black Coat" and a cover of Bobby Caldwell's hit, "What You Won't Do for Love."
 
One could argue that every Junior Boys album is about love, and Big Black Coat is no exception, but this time, the duo's devotion is to the '90s electronic music scene — a worthy muse, if there ever was one. (City Slang)