Without making a big political issue out of it, New York/Boston’s Juicy wades right into the charged world of enlightened relationships on its sparkly guitar-pop debut. Thanking “all of our super-talented rocker friends and ex-boyfriends for the inspiration,” Juicy — guitarist/singer Kendall Meade, guitarist/singer Lisa Marafioti, bassist Jen Levin and drummer Meggean Ward — plays simple, alluring love-rock that sounds alternately like a female Pooh Sticks working without a producer and a four-piece Beat Happening. Plainspoken and puckish on the brief For the Ladies, Juicy reclaims some dignity in the wake of being dumped (“Fuck You I’m Cool”), gripes about the embarrassing behavior of a friend’s “Psycho Ex-Boyfriend,” ruminates atmospherically about being “Sad,” attributes a sexual encounter to being “High” and gets an unexpected thrill from the itinerant “Rocketboy.” Juicy isn’t about to resolve any of the great issues in the war between the sexes, but getting these melodic shots in is to the benefit of all.
Olive Juicy, produced by Wharton Tiers, finds Juicy slimmed down to a one-guitar three-piece (minus Marafioti) but unwavering in its conceptual dedication: “True Love Tomorrow?” and “Sourheart” are just two of the new dozen. There’s also a wry cover of Don Henley’s “The Boys of Summer” for good measure.