Californian punk rockers Joyce Manor released new single “Last you heard of me” earlier this week. The track is off their upcoming record “Cody,” due Oct. 7 via Epitaph Records.
“Found myself down at the Alibi for the second time this year/wrote my song down, gave it to the guy/then went to grab another beer,” sang Barry Johnson in the opening lines of the song. The lyrics, not unusual to avid Joyce Manor listeners, draw a picture book in the listener’s mind. What really differentiates Joyce Manor’s new music is the actual music that accompanies lyrics.
Take, for example, the opening lines of “Ashtray petting zoo,” off the band’s 2011 self-titled release: “I walked in to find what’s worse than worst of all time/I walked out to see exactly what I expected to see.” Without music both lyrics resemble a similar conversational style that paints a picture and even then the lyrics provide more meditation than solution – a common style for Joyce Manor as Matthew Strauss of Pitchfork points out.
Nonetheless the style of music is still the same, but in detail it is new. The guitars sound fresh – a sort of compressed distortion, unlike the untamed distortion of earlier music – the vocals are still sincere, but not as loud.
The taste of new material is only the second waft, (Fake I.D. was released over the summer), yet it is promising that “Cody” will preserve the band’s sound with new tales for listeners to hear. I got to see Joyce Manor play a small club in Long Island in the winter of 2015, and it is no surprise to see them move up in venue size – the band delivers a raw performance full of energy.
Joyce Manor will play The Sinclair (Cambridge, Mass.) on Oct. 19 and Oct. 20.