White Boyfriend: “White Boyfriend” Review
White Boyfriend’s single “Breaking Up with Mr. Smiles” has been making the rounds as of late – showing up on Radio K’s programming regularly as well as 89.3 the Current. The bad news is that that could change in the near future. The good news is that the reason for that change is that after this Friday local radio will have eleven additional excellent White Boyfriend songs to choose from. I speak of the band’s debut full length album that will be released at the 7th St. Entry this Friday. And while the album’s dozen tunes includes some funny little vignettes that aren’t quite entire songs, there are over a half dozen or so that should be candidates for radio play.
And while the vignettes wouldn’t make for good radio, they are essential to giving White Boyfriend its weird, playful sound and by proxy, exuding the weird, playful spirit of bandmembers Nicky Leingang (synths) Katharine Seggerman (drums), and Dan Hansen (bass). Whether a short scream (“S.L.I.P.P.E.D. O.U.T”) or a lustful ode to athleticism (“Sports!”) or a 30 second acapella phone call theory (“Drunk Dials”) the eccentricity of the band truly shines the most between songs.
That’s not to say the full songs themselves aren’t great though! White Boyfriend covers breadth of style that is idiosyncratic in and of itself. “The First” is a heart-meltingly pretty pop song fronted primarily by Seggerman’s fragile-sounding vocals (backed up by the guys) as well as an unexpected saccharine string accompaniment. “Asterion” is an off-kilter synth-inflected midtempo tune that showcases the band’s songwriting maturity (via a melancholy minotaur). “Poison Rings” contains both humor as well as catchy organ hooks and “Asters” is a disco slowdance. To finish the album out “Love Like Hubble” ends White Boyfriend on a positively folky, love-stricken note.
While the album is pretty all over the map stylistically, a few common threads do bind all the tunes together. White Boyfriend’s overall sound contains a constant equilibrium of humor and wide-eyed romanticism. They sound like a band who has a healthy and realistic sense of more ridiculous sides of love – and they aren’t afraid to laugh (or cry) about them. I invite you to laugh and cry as well – you can stream the band’s single below and if you want to hear more, you can do so at the Entry this Friday night (1/16) or pick up the album from Ecstattic Studios at your convenience.