Label: Dead Oceans
Released: 4th June 2021
Michelle Zauner’s career has been varied and constantly compelling. From her earliest beginnings over a decade ago making scrappy, perky pop-punk to creating stunning videos and imagery as an in-demand director to her first book published this year. It’s with her Japanese Breakfast project though that Zauner is most well known with two excellent albums, and now comes her third record ‘Jubilee’ to smash everything out the park with pop glee.
This is an album that glistens and sparkles at every moment. Zauner is revelling in her musical step up as she employs synths, strings, saxophones, pianos, guitars and anything she can lay her hands on to take her evocative and richly detailed songwriting to a new level. Songs like ‘Kokomo, IN’ and the ecstatic rush of ‘Jubilee’ feel like modern classics, and the rippling positivity that runs through the record is a welcome balm in a time of strife. Zauner recognises the importance of hope while taking a deeply human and emotionally resonant approach to big themes like global capitalism. As the record concludes with the gently expansive epic ‘Posing For Cars’, it feels like the culmination of a journey and the arrival on the biggest stage of a significant talent.