Healthy Junkies review

\"HealthyI’ve been aware of Healthy Junkies for a fair while now and over the course of that time, have been able to see them develop their skills and hone their sound to where they are today. Drawing influence from the likes of Iggy Pop, Nirvana, The Doors and Blondie, Healthy Junkies have gone through their fair share of line up changes since their conception, but are now setting forth with a solid line up (Nina, Phil, Dave and Danny) and their spanking new album, The Lost Refuge.

Having played numerous festivals around the UK as well as gigging to keep their name out there, Healthy Junkies have already achieved some serious highs, supporting Walter Lure in London and launching their album at Rebellion Festival, showing that this female fronted punk unit could well be on the rise. Add into the mix their music which combines rock, punk, glam and grunge, and the unit we see before us certainly tick all of the boxes on paper, but what of the new album?

As Resistance launches the album into being there’s a real sense of punk fuelled rock going on, harnessing the attitude of punk whilst levelling things off with that eased in rock approach, hitting out hard but not overdoing it. This ability to produce tracks which capture the catchy essence of punk is what sets Healthy Junkies up so well and what is going to help continue to push them upwards within the scene. Spoilt Brat continues this further, with chunky guitars leading the way and backing everything up with bass heavy rhythms, solid drum work and those almost angelic vocals from Nina – it’s a mix that’s going to appeal to fans of various genres.

Continuing to push onwards through Play Me, Scam Update, If You Talk To Her and Swansong, each track continues to showcase the ability and musicianship within the band, offering up hook after hook as well as attitude fuelled punk rock goodness. As La Vie En Rose comes about we’re shown a more comical side of Healthy Junkies, with an homage to the Parisian roots of lead singer Nina, and a track that stands out as a demonstration of how they don’t take themselves too seriously, and instead, love what they do. Flowing naturally onto Cat Story we’re shown yet another side of the band, moving away from hard hitting punk rock and instead offering up a mix that wouldn’t have sounded out of place in the mid 90’s brit-rock movement – and whilst to some that might sound odd, on The Lost Refuge it’s just another moment that simply works.

Right up until the closing moments of Sex War there’s not a moment that doesn’t work, and as the album comes to a close there’s an immediate desire to hit rewind and go back through it all over again. Healthy Junkies haven’t just progressed since their previous offering, but have taken on board the feedback they’ve received, worked together as a band and produced The Lost Refuge, an album that’s got mass appeal, and an album that could well shift them from the underground to the far more mainstream – highly recommended.

Rating: 9/10

-Dave Nicholls