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REVIEW | Tony Peachka – “dirty knees”

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By: Maddy Siiter

dirty knees – Tony Peachka’s latest release, plays like an angsty excerpt from a diary. Bits of heartbreak, eye rolls, young adult uncertainty and band practice inside jokes are all crammed into the nine-track, punk, garage-pop record.

The Minneapolis four-piece is comprised of Melissa Jones (vocals, rhythm guitar), Danielle Cusack (bass), Stephanie Murck (guitar) and Hayley Briasco (drums) and was named The Current’s Artist to Watch this past August.

The lack of formality and excess of plucky guitar riffs throughout the record is an excellent example of the mess that is adolescence, and the DIY, “thrown-togetherness” of it makes it easy to jump inside of the heads of the Peachka kinship.

Think the whimsicality of Frankie Cosmos, just with scraped (or dirty) knees.

In “dirt” Jones questions sing-songly, “do you love yourself like I’ve been taught, taught not, not to,” but quickly reassures, “I’m going to be somebody so important, so important.” In “fall asleep to 2”, she then tosses around, “so let me play that song again, wear that stupid sweater again.”

The switch in vocal tone from gentle and reminiscent to demanding and sour not only highlights Jones’ register and the band’s diversity in technique and style but the variety of feelings that go on in the mind of a young person.

There’s nothing vague here. In 19 minutes, these twenty-somethings have been able to construct an album of pure turmoil and understanding, but unlike some diary entries, this isn’t something to stuff in the back of your pajama drawer.

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