Anthemic punk rock with the occasional nod to hardcore and reggae. I really wasn’t too enthused with this disc upon first listen. Although it’s catchy and some of the hooks are nice, there really isn’t any new ground being broken musically. Then I read the lyrics. There’s a level of intelligent introspection and a deceptive simplicity to them that makes them easy to understand yet surprisingly deep on a variety of levels. Most effective is the song “Amarillo’s Shame,” which is about the punk rock kid intentionally run over by a classmate during a fight. While one might feel the band’s delivery of the song lacks an appropriate level of anger, the sarcasm, outrage and moral indignation they feel towards those responsible for letting the driver of the car off literally drips from every line of the lyrics. I went back and listened to the whole disc again, lyric sheet in hand, and have come to the conclusion that this is some damn fine work. Sorry it took me so long to notice.
–jimmy (One Way, 324 Broadway, Somerville, MA 02145)