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Formed by longtime friends Daniel M. and Matt S. as an acoustic duet in 2002, Joy puts a unique spin on pop music. A little folky, a little bluesy, a little country, the band offers subtle compositions that warble beneath idiosyncratic vocals-the cornerstones of a musical relationship that spans two decades. Now a quartet, Joy makes an interesting addition to the Shrimper Records catalog. Their self-titled debut is a quick half-hour of deceptively simple, mostly-acoustic 4-track twangling, and remains intimate and sparse throughout. Hatred and Grief, Joy's self-released sophomore effort, integrates 8-track and studio recordings to deliver a more complex sound without compromising the DIY spirit captured in their earlier work. More conceptual than either previous release, Devil's Blues ushers in a new phase of Joy's musical development. Recorded digitally (for the most part) in the band's basement rehearsal space and at New Alliance East (Boston, MA), Shrimper's proper follow-up to Joy finds the band experimenting with instrumentation and lyrical themes. The result is a more focused, more mature work that honors the band's roots while taking a dramatic step toward its sonic future. To date, Joy has shared the stage with Lou Barlow, Daniel Johnston, Holopaw, the Fruit Bats, Scout Niblett. The band continues to perform throughout the Northeast, and is currently planning a tour in support of Devil's Blues in early November.