Single Review: Healthy Junkies – ‘Last Day In L.A.’

Tongue in cheek trash-glam pop with a Nico-esque lead? Why wouldn’t this catch my attention. In a playful escape from unwanted surroundings, using music to break out of ruts, Healthy Junkies produce something special.

With a cute self-awareness and sunshine scuzz riffs, we mix post-punk and alt-80s indie. There’s an energy buzzed up from scratched out distortions, there’s an urgency pressed through the vocals. Over the bones of the track that blasts equal parts Buzzcocks and the glam-punk revival of Soap Girls, Nina’s pristine delivery shimmers. Words come half-sung half-strut with a monotone sweetness that exude teenage streaks of rebellion.

But rebellion here sounds like necessity, Healthy Junkies are punk’s Cinderellas. Having run away from Paris in the pursuit of rock and roll, Nina made her connections in London. Since then there’s been tours in UK and US and too many support slots to mention. Maybe that’s why this sounds so authentic, a real life CBGB romance.

Its cool heat, its simplicity, its glossed self-assurance, these are hallmarks of forgotten anthems. Family Fodder’s ‘Debbie Harry’, Martha & the Muffins’ ‘Echo Beach’, a stretched line from Blondie to Buggles, all these songs keep their place in the kitsch new wave cannon that ‘Last Day In L.A.’ gainly plays with. It’s a dormant pop gem with a bubblegum agro and it’s blissfully short, sharp and raucous.

Last Day In L.A. is out now, with the band’s new LP ‘Forever On The Road’ due out on Sept 25th.