Superchunk – “Majesty Shredding”

Superchunk, the near dormant pop-punk, bubble-gum, outsider band is BACK with their ninth studio album in twenty years and it’s just like they never left.

However, they did leave. Their last “full” album was 2001’s Here’s to Shutting Up and after that absence, Superchunk brings us a strong, hooky album that is unfortunately a decade too late, which may sound a bit unfair.

The past few years have seen a rise in other bands have taken that self-aware weirdo pop and run full tilt with it plainly building on what acts like Superchunk, Dinosaur Jr. and Pavement have done before.

The large issue is that these newer, younger bands have pushed forward and are able to offer experiences that are influenced by that kind of 1990s kick but are thankfully not slavishly devoted to it.

Everything about this album is just extraneous. There is no delight of the unexpected, there is no note not calculated based on time-tested, 90s, slightly-pop, slightly-punk “alternative” sound. If you love that sound, then you’re set. Hell, this is probably your favorite year ever with the return or return to form of so many 90s bands and you’re just reading this to confirm your opinion that this album totally rocks. If that’s the case, you probably already have this album.

If you are not already a fan, this album may convince you to check out their previous works, but it’s not an essential release and will most likely be forgotten this time next year.

Majesty Shredding is a solid album recalling a particular sound in a particular time and your tolerance for that kind of music will inform your patience for the album.

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