Published Sep 19, 2019Eight years since Vivian Girls last released an album, the fuzz-pop trio of singer-guitar Cassie Ramone (The Babies), bassist Katy Goodman (La Sera) and drummer Ali Koehler (Upset) have reunited for an LP that rekindles the spark of their buzz-band heyday. From the summery VHS-chic of the album cover to the hazed-out reverb of the production to the melancholic lyrics, Memory recaptures the spirit of Vivian Girls' self-titled debut.
These 12 songs sound like they were beamed straight outta 2009 — particularly the single "Sick," with its two-minute surge of peppy punk rhythms, bleary shoegaze distortion and wall-of-sound vocal harmonies. Elsewhere, "Lonely Girl" mixes harsh melodies with sudden glimmers of sweetness, while the ominous, looming choruses of "I'm Far Away" are the album highlight.
Is it a radical reinvention? Absolutely not. Memory doesn't break any new ground for Vivian Girls, but it's not trying to, either, making for a welcome throwback to the glory days of shitgaze. Is it too early to feel nostalgic for 2009? (Polyvinyl)