Lupin is the sound of an arrival. Across eight tracks of subverted, expansive pop, Jake Luppen’s solo debut is all sharp edges, a fractured self-portrait pieced together through left-of-center, funk-leaning maximalism.
For Luppen, the process of making the record was one of self-discovery and a path to confidence, learning who he could be – and had always been – as both an artist and simply a person. Although Luppen rose to prominence as a vocalist and guitarist in St. Paul’s beloved indie outfit Hippo Campus, the songs on Lupin feel like meeting him for the first time. He puts it succinctly: “With this record I wanted to get to the point, and say how things were, as opposed to dancing around them.”
In the past, he always took a vaguer route to songwriting, eschewing the personal in favour of broader, shared experiences of his bandmates. Striking out as a solo artist allowed him the space to do the opposite. Instead of hiding behind bigger words or looser ideas, here Luppen finds the bravery to write about his life – a serious break-up, a health scare, sexual exploration, and discovering his own personhood – with incisive specificity.