boygenius “the record” Review

So, March 31st is the big day for gay depressed annoying people, so me in a nutshell. The new
album, the record, by boygenius, consisting of Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers, and Lucy Dacus,
is out for the world to consume and sulk over. That’s what I did once it was released. On my first
listen, I cried. I went through a lot of emotions during this album. I even have proof of those
emotions! Which means I have selfies of me crying. After listening to the songs more than once,
I feel like I have a better feel for the songs, which ones I like the most and ones that aren’t in my
top five. It is so hard to choose right now and it will probably change after even more listens.

One thing I noticed is that there are distinct songs that you can tell each member designated for
themselves, while still incorporating each other’s vocals. The first three singles had that theme:
“$20” is Baker’s song (which is still my favorite), “Emily, I’m Sorry” is Bridgers’ and “True
Blue” is Dacus’. For me, the only songs that are collectively their songs would be “Without You
Without Them,” “Not Strong Enough,” and “Cool About It.”

The last three songs on the album follow the same theme of the first singles. “We’re In Love” is
totally Dacus’ song, it sounds like one that could have been on Home Video. “Anti-Curse” has
Baker’s hard hitting guitar. The saddest song would have to be “Letter to An Old Poet,” which is
all Phoebe but pays an homage to “Me & My Dog” from their first EP.

When I first heard the bridge to the last song on the album, I think I died and then was rebirthed.
“I wanna be happy/ I’m ready to walk into my room and without lookin’ for you/ I’ll go up to the
top of our building/ And remember my dog when I see the full moon” was just beautiful. I really
love how they brought back the ideas/themes from one of their most popular songs. On the song,
Bridgers has a slight pause before she says “happy,” and I think that was a wonderful stylistic
choice since boygenius has grown so much since 2018, when their EP came out.
I have so much love for these three women and the band they’ve created. They stay true to
themselves stylistically and lyrically yet their differences bring them together, and that is very
apparent on the record. These songs are emotional and meaningful, especially for me.

Like Pitchfork, I think I would give it around an 8/10. I think Baker stands out the most on the
album just because she has a stronger voice and the instruments she chooses for songs centered
around her narrative are just different from Bridgers and Dacus. That might be a bit biased but
overall, I think this album is GREAT. The lyrics are rich and the album offers very sonically
different songs which all work really well together.

My favorite songs are “$20,” “Cool About It,” “Satanist” (which has a strong Baker influence
but incorporates all three in a cohesive and beautiful way) and “A Letter to An Old Poet.” This
album will be on repeat for the coming weeks and months. boygenius is wonderful and they have
helped me so much.

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