Earlier this week, boygenius – the women-led supergroup composed of Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus – premiered The Film, a Kristen Stewart-directed short featuring three individual music videos from the band’s highly-anticipated full-length album, The Record, and their first release since their 2018 EP. For those who’ve been keeping up with boygenius’ queer antics for a while now, Stewart’s honourary addition to the family won’t come as a surprise: the band is built around female friendship, with Pulitzer-nominated novelist Elif Batuman writing the introductory essay to the album, while Paramore frontwoman Hayley Williams cameoed the trio’s Rolling Stone cover shoot.
Suitably, boygenius also loves to poke fun at male hero worship: their band name is a wink-eyed reference to how male artists are often propelled into god territory, over-inflated and sold to the public as visionaries (the artwork for their self-titled EP took a similarly playful approach, imitating Crosby, Stills, & Nash’s debut). The inverse is touched on their track “Strong Enough”, where they described female musicians as “always an angel, never a god”, while on track “Leonard Cohen”, the songwriter is savagely dismissed as “an old man having an existential crisis in a Buddhist monastery writing horny poetry”.
But most importantly, the beauty of boygenius is the bond between its members, all of whom identify as queer, and whose music – the sort that’s historically been made by misogynistic bros – explores the nuances of female friendship in all its emotional intensity. This connection is crystalised in one of the album’s closing tracks “We’re in Love”, as Dacus croons: “We stripped down to our skin/ Cold and porcelain/ Like bathers in a painting.” Already accomplished individual performers in their own rights, it’s the strong bond between all three members that makes listening to boygenius such an intimate and joyful experience.
Elsewhere, Turkish psych-rock outfit Altin Gün share a new release, Tyler, the Creator drops an expanded edition of Call Me If You Get Lost, and Tzusing unveils his sophomore album.