25 MINUTES TO GO: This Time’s for Serious: CD

There are pluses and minuses to being older than most of the local punk rock scene. One of the major minuses is that it is really easy for me to slip into a mindset that looks at bands and rationalizes that “I’ve seen this before” or “I know what’s going to happen next.” A lot of times my instincts turn out to be true and sometimes that’s not a good thing. So, when I expect things to take a turn for the worse and then they don’t, I’m plenty stoked about it. Case in point: 25 Minutes To Go. Judging by the histories of most punk rock bands that last longer than a couple of years, they should be sucking hard right about now and they just aren’t. A lot of bands who find a certain level of success in the punk rock scene try to become slicker and more professional in hopes of attracting a wider audience. When I first pressed play on this CD, I was expecting a slicker departure from their earlier sound, but, happily, they went backward! This is the rawest recording they’ve ever done! This recording does a really good job of capturing their live sound. There are no other real surprises here except for the acoustic, country version of one of their older songs, “It’s Go Time.” They play this style of music fine too, but it’s not the type of music I normally listen to so I won’t play it as much as I do the other nine songs here, which carry on in the harder rocking Social Distortion/Pennywise style that this band is known for. Somehow they still manage to sound fresh and inspired. I look forward to their continuing to prove me wrong again and again.

 –Chris Peigler (twentyfiveminutestogo.com)