Jubilee

by Japanese Breakfast

Released June 4, 2021 via Dead Oceans

Reviewed June 15, 2021

Top tracks (based on community voting)
Paprika (56%), Be Sweet (41%), Posing For Cars (39%)

Over the last five years, Japanese Breakfast—led by singer/songwriter/guitarist Michelle Zauner—have found their musical footing in grief and solemness. With Jubilee, the band trades Zauner’s autobiographical processing of trauma for a more hopeful and optimistic slice of indie pop. Still markedly warm and dense in sound, Jubilee finds its comfort in clear skies and a shimmering sun rather than snuggled blankets and long embraces. And with this newfound positivity, Japanese Breakfast unearths love, comfort, and a future amidst a minor stylistic shift that strikes a balance of lo-fi shoegaze influences and groovy, upbeat indie pop. – Dominick (8.2/10)


As the summer solstice approaches, Japanese Breakfast’s Jubilee captures the fleeting emotions that permeate in those dog days that are soon to arrive. Summers may feel like a sun-kissed dream, yet no amount of sunshine can dissolve one’s sorrow or loss. Jubilee, although quite vibrant at first glance, harbors a grief that its dancy, indie pop ballads soon give way to in the second half of the album. Michelle Zauner puts her versatility as a songwriter on full display here and allows for two opposite atmospheres to coexist on the same project. We’d all love a summer that could wipe away that pain, just like we’d love an album that never relinquishes its ability to make one get up and dance. But life is never that easy, and Japanese Breakfast’s third release beautifully exemplifies that. – Ben (Synth) (7.5/10)


Japanese Breakfast flirts with a familiar side of the artistic pop spectrum on Jubilee. The music sounds like it has always been here but brings enough to the table stylistically to prevent it from becoming stale. Jubilee is home to well-produced, arranged, and performed slices of sonic perfection packed with luscious and ever-listenable musicality. This makes it a joy to indulge in, providing a piece that doesn't require too much thought to understand, while still able to be dug deeper into. On the surface, it seems to be your run of the mill contemporary pop record, but on further inspection, there are quite a lot of intricacies and delicate musicianship. Japanese Breakfast have created an album that is as fun as it is tasteful, a balance rarely adhered to. – Peter (7.5/10)


Enth: 9/10 | Alan: 8.5/10 | Cam: 8.3/10 | Dominick: 8.2/10

Pax: 8.2/10 | Ben (Synth): 7.5/10 | Daniel: 7.5/10

Jared: 7.5/10 | Peter: 7.5/10 | DeVán: 7.3/10