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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

REVIEW: Boygenius’ debut album “the record”

Supergroup Boygenius, composed of artists Phoebe Bridgers, Julien Baker and Lucy Dacus, released its debut album, “the record,”  which explores themes surrounding friendship, love and the act of growing up. 

Following the success of their first self-titled EP and each of the artists’ own individual careers, there were high expectations preceding the project’s announcement. Though “the record” meets many of these expectations, it fell short in some areas, yet still allowed for an enjoyable listening experience. 

With “the record,” Boygenius envelopes the listener with a sense of intimacy, through warmly complex instrumentation, talented vocal performances and enriched songwriting. The album is unrestricted by genre and travels to worlds of pop punk, acoustic pop and soft rock.

Topically the project jumps around, touching on various themes and ideas, all tied together by the emotional threads of friendship and love. Created and connected through friendship, the strength of the group’s relationship and dynamic allows for memorable music accompanied by encaptivating lyricism that’s rooted in truth and love for one another.  

These ideals are best represented on the tenth track “We’re In Love.” The song is supported by a simple acoustic guitar line, punctuated with lightly mixed piano notes and ambient synth strings, which highlight Dacus’ centerpiece of a vocal performance. Her contemplation on the friendship between the three hangs in the air, forcing the listener to muse on the love they feel within their own life. 

The track “Not Strong Enough” delivered the feeling of being stuck in time, dissecting the uncertainty of life, and being okay with the unknown. Baker’s angelic vocals following Bridger’s melancholy verse created the perfect lead into an enthralling bridge sung by Dacus. 

The lyrics “always an angel, never a God” from “Not Strong Enough” remain the most memorable from the track list serving as a call back to the relationship between femininity and identity in modern day society.  

Though well produced and expertly written, the project feels expected from this group and ultimately lacks originality in certain areas. Coming from three powerhouse artists, you’d expect something more groundbreaking, and while “the record” has impressive moments, as a whole it feels more like a collection of the trio’s talent, as opposed to a combination.

However, this is the group’s first full length album, and as the trio’s relationships with one another develop, this untapped potential will only flourish. Their collective talent is undeniable, and with “the record” as a starting point, Boygenius has infinite potential for growth. 

Sofía’s Favorite Song: “Letter to an Old Poet”
Sam’s Favorite Song: “Leonard Cohen”

We rate the album 3.75/5 stars

This story was written by Sam Baughn and Sofía Cortés. They can be reached at [email protected] and [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Sofía Cortés
Sofía Cortés, Assistant Arts & Entertainment Editor
Sofía Cortés is the assistant editor for Arts & Entertainment. She is a junior majoring in journalism and with a writing intensive minor. Sofia is from Puerto Rico and outside of the Wire she enjoys reading, writing poetry, drawing and listening to music
Sam Baughn
Sam Baughn, General Manager for Marquette Radio
Sam Baughn is a senior from Stoughton, Wisconsin, majoring in Digital Media and minoring in English Literature. He is the General Manager of Marquette Radio for the 2023-2024 year. Outside of his work with MUR, Sam pursues amateur photography and enjoys cooking and baking. He is immensely excited to work with an incredible team to push MUR to new heights, build systems for long-term growth and create new events and programming.

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