Formed in 2018 Blu Joy is a band from Phoenix, AZ that recently released a self-titled album Blu Joy. According to the band, “Their first EP 86 came out in the fall of 2018 and they've been playing shows throughout Arizona since. They've put out three more EP's in the years following, and in Jan 2023, their debut full length LP blu joy was released. After hosting a revolving door of bassist's, fellow Phoenix local Dylan Anthony was brought in at the end of summer 2022 making the group a solid three-piece. Blu Joy currently plans on continuing to write and perform in AZ.” Most people I talk to these days aren’t particularly happy with the state of the world. Between tribalism, increasing inflation, global tensions, banks collapsing, mass shootings, etc it’s hard to be excited about the future. I did at least momentarily put those worries aside and found a sense of joy (pun intended) coming from this album. It almost serves as a form of escapism. The band mixes modern sounding indie rock with a nod to ’50s pop. Their sound is familiar yet contemporary. The songs burst with palatable melodies. This starts with “Up & Down” which is an example of their ability to bring vibrant energy. The bass line slides across with jangly guitar chords and some well done drumming. It’s airy, fun and playful while feeling emotionally resonant. “Already Gone” is an example of the band at their best. If you’re in a rush and want to get a taste of what the band has to offer this would be a good one to listen to. The song is just a blast. I loved how carefree and playful the song was without sounding saccharine. The album is also remarkably consistent. They are able to produce groove after groove. The more you listen the more their signature sound starts to form and harden. There are different degrees to their sound. The more robust “Heaven” is slick but contains a distortion heavy chorus that combines with vocal harmonies. I loved it. One of the more single worthy songs on an album full of potential singles was “Incompetent.” This song rocks and feels like it’s moving forward. It’s a little punk but in style that feels like it’s Blu Joy. There are a couple unexpected twists and turns. “All I Can Give” is an organ fueled which has this ’70s vibe I wasn’t expecting yet still works well on the album. Another example of this is the closer “Conflict” where the song revolves around a piano melody which gives a certain quality that felt ’70s inspired as well. This is an exceptional album. I wouldn’t be surprised if Blu Joy became a household name soon. The songs are that good.
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