Julen y la Gente Sola


Julen Y La Gente Sola's self-titled debut album has the great virtue of not hindering or clouding the songs that for years had been becoming hits in the Uruguayan underground. It doesn't have the rawness of a live record, but it does have its immediacy and freshness. Stripped of baroque or superfluous arrangements, the ten songs that make it up sound exactly like what their audience expected, but more clearly compared to the precarious sound where Julen used to play. The album also has another enormous virtue, and it's the unconsciousness of youth, the search for an identity, without shame, modesty, or calculation. Lyrically, it's an album that hints it was written by people barely in their twenties. At times cheesy, at times rough, but always seemingly honest. Led by Federico Morosini, a prolific songwriter full of primal enthusiasm composing songs back-to-back with his cheap Creole guitar in his mother's house; supported at first by Juan Pablo Campagna on electric guitar and Marcelo Duarte on drums, eventually with Agustina Santomauro as bassist. They stood out for songs that forged subtle links that had never been crystallized in such a solid way between the Montevideo song, the Donosti sound, the twee pop bands released by Sarah Records, the noisy nineties indie bands of Matador Records, and the independent scene on both sides of the Río de la Plata, the Uruguayan collective Esquizodelia, and the Argentine label Laptra. Julen had an ace up their sleeve and it was the arrangement of their songs. While it may be easy to identify their influences, the trait of creating anthem-like songs was relatively novel. Their first compositions hold a sense of spiritual discernment, a sensibility that could only be described without belittling them, as "popular." This debut album, perfect in its imperfection, is a document, a time capsule of a period that in the face of constant technological, social, and economic changes, seems to be further and further away even though not even a decade has passed since its release. Resembling the memory of teenage years, perceived close yet unattainable from the rearview mirror that gives back a slightly idealized reflection. Red vinyl.