Born Ruffians Don't Have Much 'PULP' to Wring Out

BY Karen K. TranPublished Apr 13, 2021

After releasing JUICE and SQUEEZE in the past year, Born Ruffians conclude their thirst-quenching trilogy with PULP, a high-energy album that's perfectly suitable for summer road trips and singalongs.

PULP has a strong start with the strum-happy jaunt of "Checkin' Out," following up with more of Born Ruffians' trademark, breezy indie rock on "Types of People" and album closer "Happy Parasites." Even though the album is short, there are a few valleys with the addition of slower songs "Heat Wave" and the sweet "Husha," which are a nice change-up from the Ruffian's usual breakneck pace. Standouts include are "Ring Finger," a catchy clap-along tune with lyrics about people who rush into marriage, and "Husha," which incorporates children's nursery rhyme "Ring Around the Rosie" to discuss the aftermath of a breakup. 

On its own, PULP is short, fast, and sweet — songs like "Checkin' Out," "Beyond the Lightning," and "Ring Finger" certainly sound like typical Born Ruffians. However, none of these tracks really break ground or feel compelling enough — PULP sounds like a rehash of their usual fare, especially coming so closely after JUICE and SQUEEZE. By releasing the 26 tracks over three albums instead of one lean and polished 12-track album, the too-similar tracks that would have otherwise been left on the cutting-room floor instead come off as filler.

Born Ruffians have really nailed down their sound and can really shine when it comes to what they're most comfortable with, but PULP finds them simply doing more of the same.
(Wavy Haze)

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