Joyce Manor – Million Dollars to Kill Me

Californians Joyce Manor tackle the day-to-day struggles of adult life with a sense of teenage gaiety on their transient fifth album

Album Review by Dylan Tuck | 18 Sep 2018
  • Joyce Manor – Million Dollars to Kill Me
Album title: Million Dollars to Kill Me
Artist: Joyce Manor
Label: Epitaph Records
Release date: 21 Sep

Growing up can be quite hard, or at least that’s what Joyce Manor thought on their fourth album Cody. The band’s critically acclaimed 2016 release was their fourth album and one that saw the punk-rock outfit step up into a more adult sense of musical direction and identity. But what happens after you’ve grown up? The answer it would seem is their new record Million Dollars to Kill Me.

At a measly 23-minute runtime, this is more of a ten-track EP than it is a feature length album. Nonetheless, the mini-record carries you along a path of self-discovery, with lyrics reflective of sentimental times gone by (Fighting Kangaroo), intertwined with the struggles of adulthood like handling your money (I’m Not the One), and complex romantic relationships (Think I’m Still In Love With You). Despite all the serious conversations of a challenging adult life that comes with Joyce Manor having clearly matured, they’re still capable of portraying a fun, jovial image of a band who just love what they do.

Musically, Million Dollars to Kill Me is the perfect follow up to Cody and continues the dynamic melodic, twisting indie-punk that they built their vibrancy upon. Grizzling, fuzzy guitars occupy a large amount of the album lead parts and chord shifts between major and minor mix up the mood while still retaining a positive outlook and feeling of cheery hopefulness. It’s short, sweet and easily one of the band’s best efforts to date.

Listen to: Fighting Kangaroo, Silly Games, I’m Not The One