Pop Punk’s Not Dead – Review

va-poppunksnotdead200Pop Punk’s Not Dead

(Go-Kart)
by Ewan Wadharmi

The expected spate of Ramones-inspired ditties stemming from ’50’s prom songs and juvenile delinquent movies is present in The Last Chucks and ringers The Queers. But these diverse bands show a wide range of interesting vocal styles; the folk-inflected harmonies of The Unlovables, the ’70’s Fogerty-like schmaltz of The Travoltas, to Wick Bambix, the kickass Dutch lesbian child of Geddy Lee and Rod Stewart. Squirtgun‘s irresistible sentimentality is unfairly stirring. The Leftovers inject an Elvis Costello sensibility to their high-speed heartbreak song “Camel.” River City High‘s hard-rock tendencies rival those of Weezer, while The Dazes have that cutesy Shonen Knife fetish. Boris The Sprinkler exemplifies the recurring sense of humor with an incredibly goofy “Buying Beer for Junior High School Students.”

The closest thing to emo is The Peabodys‘ “It Only Hurts When I Think” which could be The Cure sped up, and an amusingly innocent “I Wanna Kiss You on the Lips” by The Steinways, who inform, “You’re not like my grandma, because she’s dead and you’re not.” Dave Parasite leaves surprisingly little to complain about, many of these tracks could fit nicely on either disc (in fact, Teenage Bottlerockets‘ “So Cool” starts opens both). His DJ skills evident; he gets on a roll early on, stacking songs that flow nicely.
(www.gokartrecords.com)