Published Jun 20, 2018According to singer Jeff Innes, Critical Hit is a record of two worlds. "As much sarcasm and wit as there is on this record, there is some intensely private shit in the lyrics too, and sometimes the vibe is just more our obsession with synthesizers and drum machines, aesthetics over lyrics," he's said about the album.
On their fourth record, Yukon Blonde show that they're not afraid to navigate slightly more challenging territory at the expense of letting loose and having a little fun.
It's not all fun and games though. While "Summer in July" might suggest a bright, sunny ode to summer romance, the song wears its heartbreak on its sleeve. "All I want to do is cry"; "I wish I could make you want me": these lines stand in contrast with the bright synths that envelop the song, and the whole record for that matter.
Indeed, the synthesizer work across the record is definitely a highlight, from the more subtle, enveloping touches on "Painting on a Smile" to the brighter, poppier work on "Crazy." The band integrate these touches well; they don't distract from the rest of the record and add new layers the band will hopefully continue to explore down the line.
Incorporating electronics can be a real challenge for groups who don't know how to use them well. But it's a challenge that Yukon Blonde handle with ease on Critical Hit. The record shows a group that have found the perfect intersection between their pop and psychedelic tendencies, and one that keeps finding new, interesting ways to keep moving forward. (Dine Alone)