Senior is the elder member of this team (hence his nickname), a burly, mustachioed schlub reminiscent of Aaron Eckhardt in Your Friends and Neighbors. He's proudly queer, while conspicuously immodest about his pan-gender appeal: "Girls think I'm hot/but I think they're not." Junior is the bass-playing pretty boy with three things on his mind: "girls, girls, girls." Like any respectable pop duo, they work out their differences in song, most notably in "Chicks and D**ks": "Say hey gay/get out of my way/Say hey straight/you're always too late."
Beyond their penchant for smart mindlessness and serious silliness, what makes Junior Senior so fresh is their European-derived sense that all American pop is glorious trash, and can be mixed in combinations that would seem odd to most American musicians. Self-proclaimed "rhythm bandits," they steal from disco, garage punk, '60s pop-rock, and goofball New Wave. They are as self-obsessed as a young Adam Ant (asking listeners if they think that Junior and Senior are dynamite, and leading repeated chants to themselves), and so resolute about their party mantras, they can sing a tune called "Shake Your Coconuts" with no apparent embarrassment.
Only pop-culture obsessives would boast that they want to be Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood, or pen a couplet that proclaims: "We wanna wear the same as Sonny and Cher/and show we've got balls like the New York Dolls." Junior Senior are funky dorks in the best tradition of David Byrne and Fred Schneider, and with D-D-Don't Stop the Beat, they suggest the kind of record Byrne and the B-52s should have made when they collaborated in 1982 on Mesopotamia. •
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