Welfare Jazz

Viagra Boys - Welfare Jazz
Critic Score
Based on 26 reviews
2021 Ratings: #140 / 416
User Score
Based on 804 ratings
2021 Ratings: #290
Liked by 49 people
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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
musicOMH

The sound on Welfare Jazz may be more of the same glam-phetamine trash disko bomp that made the first record so distinctive ... but there’s something else that’s been added to their arsenal, something that was hiding in plain sight all along.

90
God Is in the TV

As a whole, this mesmerising romp through mayhem and carnage will take you on a memorable journey, profound, joyful, spontaneous and bewildering.

85
Northern Transmissions

Viagra Boys tone down the adrenaline, like they have something else they’re living for now. They’re chasing peace, stability, and a sound mind.

80
The Line of Best Fit

These are powerful, thoughtful songs that stand up to hours of repeated listening, and always raise a smile in the process.

80
NME

If 2018 debut ‘Street Worms’ was your party-loving, gobby little brother, ‘Welfare Jazz’ is the well-to-do, country-loving cousin who’s ready to buckle up and not look back.

80
Uncut

After their 2018 debut, Street Worms: helped them become a powerhouse live act, Welfare Jazz ratchets up the pizzazz.

80
Exclaim!

While still lighthearted and filled with humour, it's a massive shift from previous releases, both musically and lyrically, with plenty of hints of more to come.

80
Gigwise

The beauty of 2018’s Street Worms came through in brilliant lyrical humour whilst being powerfully sad simultaneously. Welfare Jazz is slightly messier in the sense that there are a lot more emotions bleeding from it, but that doesn’t make it a messy album.

80
The Independent

There’s a lot to unpack, but Welfare Jazz is a smart and rousing listen.

80
Clash

Much like the main character of ‘Welfare Jazz’, Viagra Boys have a deep well of emotional intelligence hidden underneath their aggressively ignorant façade.

80
The Arts Desk

Their sound is a Tennessee-flavoured, rock’n’rollin’ electro blues, pumped up with grubby distorted bass-end riffing and occasional Krautrock tints. Welfare Jazz pushes this stew into all sorts of shapes and corners.

80
Under The Radar

Viagra Boys come off as less as comedic satirists and more as representatives of the very characters they critique, turning inward for a fascinating, though no less manic, follow up.

80
Upset

The whole record continues to deftly alternate between seismic, spasming punk and silver screen beauty, rounded up with a dose of Americana longing to complete its charm and eclecticism.

80
Dork

On 'Welfare Jazz' the usually hard-hitting Viagra Boys undergo an identity crisis, severe enough to plot a Thoreau-style escape into the woods.

80
The Needle Drop

On their sophomore album, Viagra Boys tell a love story via punk eclecticism.

80
Spectrum Culture

Every song on Welfare Jazz has something about it worth obsessing over or digging deep into.

77
Beats Per Minute

Viagra Boys have successfully captured a side of the working class that demands empathy, and it’s their strongest statement to date.

75
Consequence of Sound

There will be no sophomore slump for Viagra Boys. At its best, Welfare Jazz represents an evolutionary step from Street Worms that’s tighter, tougher, and more riotous than what came before.

72
Pitchfork

The subversively sleazy Stockholm post-punk band walks a delicate satirical line between provocation and trolling.

70
Loud and Quiet

On this album, with their trademark snarls and ferocious contempt, Viagra Boys succeed in rendering the personal political and the mundane absurd.

70
DIY

‘Welfare Jazz’ stands as a document of a band that are perhaps more in limbo than they might first appear.

70
Sputnikmusic

The story telling is very up front, yet the confidence and attitude never passes into obnoxious, parody of oneself territory. As a result, Welfare Jazz remains a tight effort that hopefully acts as a transition to a richer sonic canvas.

70
The Forty-Five

Viagra Boys display enough scope to move their sound along, but they know what to retain: pathos, sardonic humour, and a reminder not to take them too seriously – and to take them as seriously as death.

60
The Guardian

The issue here isn’t intent; it’s execution. But when Viagra Boys are completely focused, they’re still fantastic.

60
Mojo

An impressive second showing, Viagra Boys have found order in the chaos.

60
Crack Magazine

Their return with Welfare Jazz marks a richer sound for the Stockholm six piece: a series of retro skits, broader genre-experimentation, and bolder production from a raft of indie legends have plumped up Viagra Boys’ previously lean song-writing.

Chode
60
It was 2018 when Viagra Boys first saw prominence within the post-punk scene, garnering love from critics and fans alike due to their unique jazz-tinged post-punk sound. Across ‘Welfare Jazz’s’ predecessor, ‘Street Worms’, the band ridiculed many negative virtues that plague modern society such as addiction, fetishes, not having a care in the world about what the future holds for you, and materialism just to name a select few. Jumping from topic to topic one song ... read more
Doublez
74
By tackling some new ideas and developing their themes, the Viagra Boys offered us a successful and coherent second album, confirming their promises without falling into the trap. Welfare Jazz demonstrates once again the singularity of the Swedish Post Punk band.

It's finally back to school, a long awaited ringtone. Everyone in line, waiting wisely for what will be made of this new year. And yes, we all know it and it shouldn't be an exception this year, but the beginning of the year is very ... read more
Rater
71
The swedish post punk band provide a record full of ups and downs, which manages to cover a vast array of different sounds but only appears in the midst of a misleading album title, as "Welfare Jazz" shows, at most, very little jazz influence throughout its duration.

And yes, that's the main problem that occurs with the effort, amongst many others, it prepares the listener for something that doesn't even come, as with its title you'd expect some sort of jazz and punk fusion or at ... read more
MickyT
64
Despite having some excellent moments, 'Welfare Jazz' doesn't really strike me as having much in the way of anything interesting or standout, many of the ideas that the band explore on here aren't fleshed out to their full potential and much of the instrumentation meanders way too much for my liking. I'm not too keen on the vocals either since they come off like a gimmick given the country twang, and most of the songwriting isn't very interesting to me.
Plats
63
Ugh... I don't like saying that this is a disappointing follow-up, but it really is. The reason why I thought "Street Worms" was so good was because of its eclecticism, its silliness, rawness, the pure DAD energy that radiated off of it. "Welfare Jazz" still has much of those charms. We still have great, energetic cuts with raw production like "Ain't Nice", "Creatures" and "Girls & Boys", which is a great successor to "Sports". ... read more
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Track List

1Ain't Nice
3:32
81
2Cold Play
0:31
59
3Toad
3:35
75
4This Old Dog
0:37
53
5Into the Sun
3:58
61
6Creatures
3:32
76
76 Shooter
4:50
70
8Best in Show II
0:46
57
9Secret Canine Agent
1:45
63
10I Feel Alive
4:29
61
11Girls & Boys
4:39
74
12To the Country
2:57
65
13In Spite of Ourselves
5:03
67
Total Length: 40 minutes
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Added on: October 14, 2020