Young Guv – Ripe 4 Luv

Like his main band Fucked Up, Ben Cook has a knack for pseudonyms and media subterfuge. He’s released songs under a passel of mostly one-off band names – his ramshackle four-song EP as Roommates was one of 2012’s underground gems, and its “Kelly I’m Not a Creep” makes a welcome reappearance here. Cook has now consolidated his efforts – sort of – under the Young Guv banner.

I say “sort of” because Ripe 4 Luv plays like a compilation album featuring three distinct bands trading in their own aspects of bygone sounds. Like Foremost and Fair by Home Blitz, a heavy dose of Chilton runs through all of them, but Guv aims for the universality of proto-teen anthems like the Raspberries. Opener “Crushing Sensation” and the title track fit in the camp of impossibly sunny early ’80s car radio classics on a par with those Ex Hex recreated so expertly last fall. “Living the Dream” and “Dear Drew” represent an ilk that look further back to a jangly ’60s vibe akin to revisionists Guided by Voices and Lilys. The drawback comes in the pair of extended Prince-ly slow jams that consume over a third of the running time. Their repetitive grooves aren’t compelling enough to justify their length. But heck, if Young Guv is kind enough to deliver us a mostly swell compilation, these two tracks are easy enough to skip.

Young Guv
Ripe 4 Luv