LAZY QUEEN – GROWING PAINS (Icons Creating Evil Art, 2023)

Long live the Lazy Queen!


Genre: Indie Rock, Bubble Punk
Rating: 8,5/10

'Tis the season to be jolly, they say. Well, maybe. But we must first agree on where we are with the season itself. At the moment we're caught right in between Christmas and New Year, that darned spot that's the epitome of melancholy: you're too excited for what's coming next to be really sad for the good days past and you don't know how to feel. So you get stuck. Dear God how I hate this sinking feeling! 'Tis the time to heal ourselves with good vibes, definitely. We need fresh sounds, positive waves, we need to feel the power of rejuvenation in our weary bones. Mmh, I think I might have just the right thing. We need Lazy Queen. In a tumultuous sea of musical mediocrity, Lazy Queen emerged like a beacon of unbridled punk energy this past spring with their latest EP, "Growing Pains." Hailing from the crossroads of Norwegian ingenuity and New York grit, this indie rock outfit delivers a sonic punch that's as invigorating as a gulp of your best and uber-spiked eggnog. Though basically heavier than the preceeding EP (A Human Reaction, 2022) it retains the same playful, relaxed attitude and raw intensity. Our guys from Oslo have brewed a potent concoction of post-rock and punk that's as catchy as it is rebellious. Lazy Queen is not here to play by the rules - they're here to break them. Each track in "Growing Pains" is a sonic rollercoaster, catapulting the listener through a maze of slightly retro melodic lines, thunderous rhythms, and vocals that'll give you shivers up to the base of your little trollish necks. The title track ,"243 New, Moon", is a late 90s escapade - so refreshing with its breezy attitude and catchy melodies fueled by Henry Garcia's fuzzy riffs and Jørgen's synth lines. Next comes "Dumb MF", a textbook example on how to write a fantastic post-rock track, the perfect showcase for Lazy Queen's rhythmic section: the aforementioned Apeness and his associate Anderdal lay down a groove that's tight and earth-shaking at the same time. Søber's voice is always clear but ineffably strange in a Robert Smith way if you get what I mean, particularly in its high register. That doesn't mean it can't bite, mind me. "I See You" and its captivating choruses are here to testify, Your Honor. Well, my sweet fiendish gingerbreads, the best comes last as always. My absolute favourites are the two final cuts: "Option to Nothing" is a high energy post rock-punk hybrid that rides the fine line between controlled chaos and outright anarchy, and you really can't help but love the vocal performance here unless you're stone deaf, I tell you. And then, for something (not) completely different: Lazy Queen delights our hairy ears with an energic ballad trespassing the borders of post-rock to break into brit pop territories - no wonder they captured the attention of Dj Jack Saunders (BBC Radio 1)! Open, airy melodies driven by clever chord progressions ends this weird, powerful and introspective trip that is "Growing Pains" and will soothe all your seasonal melancholies, my dearest gargoyles. If Lazy Queen maintains this trajectory, writing tracks that pulse with the same cool energy and attitude found in this EP, then mark my words - the future is theirs for the taking. It's as if they've cracked the code to the punk rock elixir, and they're not afraid to share it with the world. Long live the Lazy Queen.