EP Review: the rest // boygenius

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The rest by boygenius was released on October 14, within the same year as the album which was met with positive reviews. The EP comprises four tracks, all of which contribute to a cohesive release that brings their sharpness to light.

‘Black Hole’ is a strong start to the album, with Julien Baker’s warm vocals greeting listeners into familiarity; this is the band we all adore. Upon first listen, it already feels familiar. This is likely because of the excellent use of signature elements they are known and loved for. The chorus introduces the rest of the group (Lucy Dacus and Julien Baker), further sticking to their trademark of harmonies that fuse together seamlessly. The song is short and sweet and keeps listeners wanting more.

There is something to be said for the band’s lyricism that seems to get increasingly reflective and profound, just when one thinks it can’t possibly get more visceral. ‘Afraid of Heights’ shows boygenius at the peak of their ingenuity, with lyrics such as “I wanna live a vibrant life / but I wanna die a boring death” articulating a complex feeling.

In terms of its instrumentation, it is similar to previous tracks like ‘Souvenir’ from their self-titled EP, the simple strumming is made great by the lyrics. It shows the power of singing as an instrument itself. In line with this, what’s interesting about the rest is that it sheds more focus on their vocal ability. The album has songs like ‘$20’ which have feisty instrumentals, in contrast, the minimalism on this EP reminds listeners that the band don’t require flamboyant music to be interesting.




‘Voyager’ begins with solemn vocals, followed up by Phoebe Bridgers’ silk-smooth voice expounding narrative that is sung tenderly, to a point where it can transport listeners to a heart-to-heart conversation with the person they love. Reminiscent to Bridgers’ ‘Smoke Signals’ from Stranger in the Alps, it is telling of how each member can stay true to their individual styles and be supported by the rest of the trio. The same can be said for the last track on the EP, ‘Powers’. Baker’s delivery of the lyrics maintains her edgy aura, yet in the same breath, reveals the reflection that comes with self-discovery.

The rest by boygenius has accelerated their momentum as a supergroup, showing that they can keep a consistent body of work that reaffirms their prowess. More so, it is a testament to the power of embracing introspection. Tackling themes like life, death, emotional vulnerability, and the rich spectrum of things in between, it reminds us that there is strength in looking feelings straight in the eye. Who knew inner monologue could sound this good?

Words by Marinel Dizon


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