Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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  • Punk [Burger, 2019] A-
  • Wink [Sub Pop, 2021] A-

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Punk [Burger, 2019]
Proudly "new-cute" and post-if-not-quasi J-pop, Mana, Kana, Yuki, and Yuna play k, g, b, and d respectively. On their second album, they beef up the high-soprano chants of their 2017 Pink with hard beats that turn march-like occasionally. They also decorate their lyrics with stray bits of English. "Choose go!" "Don't kidding me." "What a cute girl I am! What a cute girl you are!" "Do you do housework? It's a great job! [Chortle chortle chortle chortle]." Replete with bite and body yet so light it might blow away like a puffball in a summer breeze, it's super simple yet unprecedented in its tiny way. Grab it now. It'll still be there when you open your hand--I promise. A-

Wink [Sub Pop, 2021]
Initially the Ramones fan in me wished this was more like Punk. But prodded by the women in my life, I softened, first because there's more punk here than meets the ears and then because in music more textural than tuneful the textures themselves can turn catchy before you know it. And then there are lyrics split between Japanese so cute and onomatopoiec they're ear candy and English so cute and smart they're mind food. "I'm in the mood for love/I'm in the mood for love you." "We need five minutes of love/Please eat before I cool down." "I know you said pink is too young/But I know you like this beat so much." "No one knows that we are smart!" But someday they will! Am I right, ladies? A-