Tennis Bafra – Abulia Jubilee (album review)

Half Cobain, half Söderling


Tennis Bafra – Halal Haircut (live video at Debaser Slussen in Stockholm)

Stream the whole album

There are different kind of people in the world. The ones who support artists like Federer, those who fancy the strength of Nadal and eventually the ones who play the winner card and go for Djokovic. Yes, I can tell who you are according to your tennis tastes.

Tennis Bafra? They are another kind of people. Let’s call them the “Söderling kind”, i.e no “arty” touch, no strength, not even the “next big Swedish thing” logo. Just some guys who play rock music born in the 1990s, you know when guitars were like ggrrrrrriiiisssssssssshhhhhhh and singer voices like “I’m so bored”. Grunge? Kind of. Fun? Somehow if you hate yourself and want to die. A bit like Söderling imitating Nadal but knowing he’s going to lose eventually.

What? I can hear you: the obscure tennis metaphore, again ? Ok, let’s be straight: maybe, their debut album Abulia Jubilee (out on Feb the 6th) is a little bit repetitive. But songs such as Halal Haircut, Knox Harrington or Koni Koni Blues bring back the best of bands like Pavement and stuff. And the nervous Uninformed Uniformed gives an appreciated “punk” touch. Ok, maybe, this is just an homage to the 1990s and does not reinvent the wheel. But who does? I mean, please never forget Lykke Li discovered tribal vibes only last year. TRIBAL! Damn. And the nineties are so much better than the eighties that at least it might bring back the revival even faster than expected.

Yes, Abulia Jubilee and its eight songs is not the kind of record you’re gonna play in vinyl asking your wife and kids to shut up because you wanna enjoy any single music detail of it all alone. This is just an album to play loud. Like the noisy tapes you used to listen to when you were a child, pretending you were the king of skateboard. That sounds gound enough for me and I do not bleach the past: am quite happy to have mentionned this band when it was still in utero. Nevermind. Ace!

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