Search The Line of Best Fit
Search The Line of Best Fit

Current Joys meld chaos and beauty on LOVE + POP


Release date: 04 August 2023
Current Joys LOVE POP cover
01 August 2023, 09:00 Written by Joshua Mills

It’s immediately apparent that LOVE + POP is a homemade creation.

That’s not intended at all as a slight: rather that this record could only be made by someone with no constraints on creativity; bedroom maestro as the mad scientist. The freewheeling result holds together remarkably well, with moments of real transcendence.

Current Joys is the project of Nick Rattigan, Surf Curse’s drummer/singer and prolific producer under his current handle. It’s clear from the off that this is an artist loath to sit still. His last couple of releases dealt mostly with moody melancholy – here, the genre fluidity is in full, frenetic effect. We tumble from pop-punk (a cover of Lil Peep’s “Walk Away as the Door Slams”, which the late rapper would surely dig) to Cure-esque goth rock on “Cigarettes” and the glitchy hyperpop of “Dr Satan”. All of this is kept cohesive by Rattigan’s skittering production and deft structure – few cuts go much past the two-minute mark, but seldom does a song feel incomplete or dashed off.

For a homemade production, the album is impressively, and joyously, collaborative. He gives most of “Gatsby”’s vocals over to Lil Yachty and brings Your Angel’s pop prowess to the title track, probably the most immediate tune on offer. Rattigan switches characters and voices at will, from loverboy killer (“I think I still taste your lipstick / I feel so fucking sadistic) to vulnerable nu-metaller (“I don’t wanna fuck, I just wanna vibe / Baby put on Deftones, look me in the eyes,” from standout “bb put on Deftones”)

LOVE + POP’s frantic, sketch-like nature is a great strength, but the record’s high points are also its outliers – its two longest, most distinct tracks. “i feel truth inside of u” takes a dramatic switch to stark, unadulterated guitar and bass as Rattigan peels back layers, beseeching a partner to “put down your phone / and try to touch me.” While other songs pile whole journeys into ninety seconds, this remains unchanged for its searching, sorrowful three-minute duration. Capping the album off is “U R THE REASON”, an energising lurch into slick dance music, at last spilling from the home studio and out into the night.

The record’s curious but assured approach is to be expected of a young artist who can nonetheless boast so much experience. Between the wild, short, but expertly formed body of the album and the longer, calmer, more developed pieces, LOVE + POP walks a musical tightrope with impeccable balance.

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