SEAGULLS: “Dear John Letter” b/w ”Foot, Meet Mouth”: 7”

I’ll be honest, this record perfectly hits all my nostalgia buttons in the right way and I totally dig it. It’s one of two ways I react to punk bands these days. The other is to mutter “this is redundant cookie cutter horseshit” or something like that. My judgments aren’t predictable, but nor are they arbitrary. I’ve got standards. Just imitating stuff I like won’t cut it. If you reference my favorite bands, I want the strength of your songs to impact me like theirs did. Seagulls do just that. It’s deeply felt, melodic, and accessible, yet not trite or sugary. The vocals are sung together with gusto and emotional pop. I really can’t put it better than Seagulls themselves on “Foot, Meet Mouth”: “I use the same fucking chords / To play the same fucking songs / With the same fucking words / And it comes out alright.” The humility there is palpable on “Dear John Letter,” too. It’s a song about a friend who attempted suicide. The words are simple, not profound, but when they sing, “the world is a lot better with you in it” it hits me so hard because they’re playing their hearts out singing about their friend. –Craven Rock (Debt Offensive)