Juiceboxxx has been performing as Juiceboxxx for most of his life, and that’s a tall order. From his first basement shows as a literal 13-year-old, to his stint opening for Public Enemy in the mid-2000s, to his reality-warping performance of “Like a Renegade” on Wisconsin local news, to the time he was the subject of an entire book, to his independent label Thunder Zone, a home for noise music, Lil Ugly Mane merch, and energy drinks… etc. etc. He’s done a lot. Like life itself, Juiceboxxx’s multidimensional resume rolls on and on, always moving forward, always confounding expectations. 

“Since the beginning, I’ve never totally fit in. I’ve always been on the periphery of a bunch of things at once,” says Juiceboxxx. “But I think that has put me in a unique position to create. Music is a tool for connection, and I don’t want to put walls around that.”

Juiceboxxx is as tireless as he is indefinable, the rarest and highest form of artist. Among a hellscape of trend-hoppers, trust-funders, pseudointellectuals, and pretty faces, who else has the conviction, not to mention the deep content to their music, to propel themselves forward as maniacally fast and hard as this stunning DIY lifer? There are few like him, because only fools try. 

Juiceboxxx’s new album is called “It’s Easy To Feel Like A Nobody When You’re Living In The City” and there is no other way to describe it than a massive leap forward. Produced by the artist alongside Grammy-nominated Joel Hamilton (Highly Suspect, Iggy Pop, Cam’Ron), the record is the anthemic culmination of a lifetime spent in the trenches of American popular culture, an honest, accessible and inspirational effort by an artist who thrives like no other at the intersection of underground pop, punk, rap and rock. 

“I’ve been in this deranged game for a minute now, and I know it’s cliche, but this record does feel like a big step,” Juiceboxxx says of the album, which features his touring band alongside special guest bass player Stephen Pope (Wavves, Jay Reatard). “I think of it essentially as a next level power pop record, influenced by everyone from Lou Reed to The Breeders to Lil Peep. It’s the first time I’ve been able to articulate the intensity of the live show on a recording. It means a lot to me and I hope my story and music can inspire some people to make it through the day and at least keep a little bit of faith in this confusing world.”

Juiceboxxx grew up outside Milwaukee, and from a young age his music has ridden the rip tides and hidden currents behind the mainstream, at different points dipping into electro, pop, noise, rap and hardcore. By his 2012 album, I Don’t Wanna Go Into The Darkness, and in its follow-ups Heartland 99 and Freaked Out American Loser, he had refined a bold synthesis of The Ramones, Springsteen, Lou Reed and the Beastie Boys. Though these styles might seem opposed, they are, like Juiceboxxx, fundamentally American. 

“The music might seem eclectic, but I’ve staked out the parameters,” Juiceboxxx says. “Currently, it all draws back to the feeling I get when I’m playing live with the Thunder Zone band behind me.”

This seems like a good place to say: Juiceboxxx is one of the single best live musicians working. Period. Backed by a tight band of lifers, he jumps and grimaces and does the splits, smashes his forehead with the microphone until he bleeds. He’s hungry, still. It’s not just the sounds that have influenced him from these disparate, iconic artists, but the raw energy of the performers. 

“It’s Easy To Feel Like A Nobody When You’re Living In The City” is the first Juiceboxxx LP to capture the spirit of his live show. It also adds a level of anthemic accessibility only hinted at on previous releases. The record feels urgent but also points in the direction of timelessness. At the end of the day, it is a big, singular guitar pop album done by a forever kid who puts John Cougar Mellencamp, Sonic Youth and Lil Uzi Vert on a level playing field. 

If you have ever felt lost or alone, this record is for you. If you don’t know what you are doing with your life, well, Juiceboxxx is in the same boat. From bleak trips to the Coinstar machine to late night panic attacks to DIY self-hatred, he has been through it all and is somehow still standing. 

It all feels very precarious.

But at least we got music. 

One day at a time.

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Latest News

Juiceboxxx Releases New Song “In The Basement”

February 6th, 2020

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