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THE BAD REVIEW Vivian Girls – Share the Joy (Polyvinyl)

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by Kelly McClure

I just had to Google the difference between Vivian Girls and Dum Dum Girls because, even though I previously worked as the Music Editor for a popular women’s magazine, I’m not too sure I’ve ever listened to either of these bands. I mean, I’m sure I have in passing, but it hasn’t registered. It’s kind of like when someone asks, “hey, do you like that band blahblahblah,” and you respond with “um, I think so”. Well, what the hell does that mean? It pretty much translates to, “I know I’m supposed to be killing myself over this band, but I really don’t give a shit”. I’ve done my research and raked together the back story on both of them, so here’s a cheat sheet in case you’re confused too:

Vivian Girls: A Brooklyn based band who’ve just released their third album, Share The Joy, on Polyvinyl. Their previous two albums were each on different labels. Their original drummer, Ali Koehler, now drums for the (amazing) band Best Coast.

Dum Dum Girls: A California based band that released a full-length and an EP on Sub Pop, as well as earlier work in the form of an EP put out by Captured Tracks. Everyone in this band is insanely attractive.

So there. Now that we have all the facts together, let’s talk about the Vivian Girls’ new album, Share The Joy.

When you think about it, music can be compared to the difference between kiddie rollercoasters, and humongous, death-defying coasters. Most albums fall into the kiddie coaster category in that they toot along at a medium speed, throw some predictable bumps in the path, rattle your neck with a quick turn or two, and then that’s it – ride’s over. With a kiddie coaster, you will find yourself forgetting about the experience of having been on it almost as soon as your butt leaves the seat. You remember it was fun, but that’s about it. Now with a massive, creaky, wooden rollercoaster that you have to wait in line for two hours to get on, you find yourself ready to have a heart attack before you’ve even gotten strapped in. The wait in line gave you time to hear the screams of the people who’ve gone before you, and allowed you the opportunity to back out and opt for a less scary ride. But you’re not gonna do that, are you, pussy? NO! Because you paid good money to have AN EXPERIENCE, and dammit, that’s what you’re gonna get.

Toot toot, Vivian Girls. I’ll ask my auntie what she thinks about your album while she’s holding the coats as I’m getting my face blown back on a big kid ride.

As to not be entirely harsh, I will offer up respect to this band for starting the whole “I sound like an old band, but I’m actually a new band, and it’s possible that I surf” thing that critics have been latching on to for the past four years. Now. Can you make it stop?

See also:
THE GOOD REVIEW Vivian Girls – Share The Joy (Polyvinyl)
Vivian Girls – Share The Joy (the free download)

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