Healthy Junkies – Delirious Dream

England’s Healthy Junkies play an intoxicating mix of punk, garage rock, with a healthy dose of theatrics. The band has been on the scene for a few years, centered around vocalist Nina Courson and guitarist Phil Honey-Jones. The current line up is rounded out with Dave Whitmore on bass and Adam Lewis on drums. Their back story reads like a novel: Nina ran away at 14 to Paris, fell in with hoodlums and eventually ran away to London where she connected with Phil. The rest, as they say, is history. Delirious Dream is the band’s 4th long-player and is their finest yet.

When All Is Said And Done kicks this album off in stunning fashion. A nasty guitar riff anchors the proceedings while Nina Courson channels rock stars of the past (think Chrissie Hynde, Siouxsie Sioux, or Patti Smith and you’ll have an idea of what I’m taking about). Lyrically, it sounds autobiographical “My life is like a whirl / Getting lost in a fog of blur / And when all is said and done / You have only just begun”. Exhilarating. I love when a band comes roaring out of the gates and just hits the listener over the head with pure aggression on the 1st few songs of a record. Healthy Junkies have this perfected – This Is Not A Suicide ups the ante from the opener. Buzzsaw guitars, snotty vocals – play this one loud! 2 minutes of perfection. The Sound Of My Guitar marries 60’s girl group vibes to the 80’s Paisley Underground – and it works, stunningly so. It’s also the single from the record, a wise move in my opinion. In an alternate universe, this would be a huge radio hit. “I was crazy and I lost my way all my money and all my friends / And the only thing that matters now is the sound of my guitar”. Perfection. A grunge inspired version of the Lee Hazlewood / Nancy Lee Sinatra hit These Boots Are Made For Walking is a late album highlight. The cover is aggressive, sensual, and works on every level. The album ends with Part 2 – a noisy workout that sounds like metal meeting shoegaze. Obviously, I love it. A perfect way to end the album.

You can follow the band here. I can’t wait to see what they come up with next, I’m bitterly disappointed that I missed their Seattle show a few months ago!

Verdict: Inspired Aggression

For Fans of: The Pretenders, Patti Smith, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Velvet Underground

Tracks:

  1. When All Is Said And Done
  2. This Is Not A Suicide
  3. Juliette’s Call
  4. Johnny Demented
  5. Some Kind of Girl
  6. Ghost Without A Soul
  7. All Talk
  8. The Sound Of My Guitar
  9. Boy Or Girl
  10. Meet And Greet
  11. This Condition
  12. These Boots Are Made For Walking
  13. James Dean Silver Screen
  14. Theft
  15. Part 2

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