ALBUM REVIEW: Yukon Blonde - On Blonde

Friday, July 10, 2015

On Blonde is the latest release from Vancouver based, Canadian group Yukon Blonde (formerly Alphababy). The record has a vibrant, summer sound with clever synths and strong bass lines. The album shows a lot of potential, falling just short of being something great. 

From the first listen there are obvious differences in their musical style compared to their previous album Tiger Talk. On Blonde is much friendlier with the synthesizer and heavier on the bass notes. The songs are overall more pop-y, unlike some of those on Tiger Talk, which dabbled in punk influences. While Yukon Blonde has always dipped their toes in the waters of electronic sounds, On Blonde is where they’ve finally taken that dive in. 

Track for track nothing stands out from the crowd. The songs follow a similar formula of funky guitar rifts and catchy lyrics. The album almost flows too well. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing; it creates an album experience. It would be a great soundtrack to a beachside Sunday session.  

The album opens with Confused. A song that dares you not to sit still with its catchy, feel good beat. The song has an optimistic eighties intro. Explosions of sound in this track promise big things for those that follow. The track does its job in setting the mood for the rest of the album.

I Wanna Be Your Man has this surprising Beach Boys style vibe of the early to mid sixties. It’s one of the tracks that can hold its own amongst the sea of heavily synthesized songs. More substantial guitars and multi-layered cheerful vocals do some solid favours here.

The first single off of the album Saturday Night has a late seventies disco feel. While most of the songs would be right at home on the beach, Saturday Night plays like it’s made to take you to the dance floor.

Hannah is the other track that breaks away from the strong eighties pop theme the album has. It has a darker side. The guitar is folkier and the lyrics more powerful. The guitars, drums, synths, and vocals turn a few corners throughout the track getting stronger and more dynamic as you work your way through the song, this track is a unique feature of the album, though it takes a couple of uninterrupted listens to pick up on its characteristics.

On Blonde is an easy, satisfying listen. Yukon Blonde has done a surprisingly good job at injecting an eighties pop vibe into the record and the songs wouldn’t be out of place in John Hughes’ film. The album’s only let down was in the variety of songs, it was easy to miss where one track ended and the next began. 

Written by Sophie Green Moore

Yukon Blonde - On Blonde 
Release Date: June 12 
Rating: 6/10