Melbourne musician Jude Perl has spent the last decade making a name for herself down under by exhilarating audiences with her collection of inescapably absorbing pop pieces. Earlier this year the quirky composer completed work on her dazzling debut album, Modern Times, which presents a satirical take on contemporary advertising techniques.
Featuring a staggering sixteen tracks, the raucous record gets off to a sunny start with the buoyant beat of “Hungry & Horny”. The music remains merry in the background while an infectious refrain resounds rousingly across the air. It’s a wonderfully whimsical opener ahead of the characterful crooning of “Can’t Wait to See You”. This cheery tune enthrals through to an eccentric interlude named “Sugar-Oh’s”.
“The Better Life Gets” is more emotional but no less uplifting afterwards, showcasing a stirring sound that engrosses until the attitude-infused serenade of “Yetta” takes over. The fantastically fiery affair that follows packs a powerful punch before passing the torch to the delightful dancefloor anthem “So Hot Right Now”. “Sugar Stuff” bridges the gap from here to “Poison Diet”, which feels funky as it glides gracefully in the direction of the delicate “Money Got in the Way”. The sobering song that ensues is heartfelt and haunting on the way to the equally affecting “Just Don’t Know”.
“Don’t Blame Me” maintains a moving mood while displaying a more playful undertone. Its vigorous vocals are extremely impactful atop intense instrumentation as it all sails smoothly into “SugarHope”. “Slaves” stomps off staunchly next, serving as a pressing preface to the endearingly gentle “Empty Room”. “Canyon” comes in upon poignant pianos then, stunning with its sonorous singing. It’s a beautiful ballad full of feeling and fervour before “Baby” brings things to a fast and effective finish.
Perl has put together a thoroughly enjoyable mixture of pop, rock, punk and dance to which it is impossible not to lose yourself. Modern Times is a brilliantly bright and boisterous undertaking that’s guaranteed to raise spirits and leave listeners enlivened. Be sure to head over to Bandcamp to experience it for yourself now.