Queer Indiana musician Joey Walker has released his intense new album Supersoft via Darling Records. Walker's music is full of emotional complexities coupled with raw and sometimes unhinged songwriting reminiscent of his heroes Jason Molina and Tom Waits. With Supersoft, Walker expands upon his own self-exploration and aims at reclaiming the "twink" stereotype, flipping the word on it's head into something more aggressive and menacing.
That’s what the Midwestern songwriter said during the mixing process of his new album Supersoft. Maybe he was being facetious, maybe he was being brutally honest, or maybe somewhere in-between, but, regardless that framework is an honest lens for his record. Joey has come a long way since his 2016 debut, Queer, and this new expression of unfiltered emotion is darker, more honed in, more self-realized.
While a "twink" is traditionally portrayed as a submissive, fragile figure, Walker complicates this queer stereotype with active, raw, and devastating songs. Sonically, he mixes brooding clean guitar with simple, driving rhythms and electronic textures, his voice floating above, wispy and ethereal.
Speaking on the album, Joey says,
"I really just wanted some fucked up pop album that straddled the weird and the normal. I wanted to create something that had an active motion and a hint of malice, a defiant piece that had a sexual double entendre at every turn. 'Supersoft' is a reference from Final Fantasy 9 and I always thought it was a cool compound word, but it also has a sexual reference built into its core. Ambivalence and opposition is what drives me as a person and I couldn't help but make an album to reflect that: sex is sin/sex is win.”
As one begins to unpack the layers to Walker's record, a complex web of darkness and power dynamics is seen simmering beneath the surface. Joey Walker makes twink rock, it just doesn't sound like one might expect.