I hate pop punk. The very term is an oxymoron. Let's review:
you take a style of music whose entire reason for existing is
to rebel against society, then you violently force it into a relationship
with popular culture, the mainstream, slick industry executives
and crass marketing techniques. Who in the hell came up with this
idea? Needless to say, I think the entire genre should be dragged
out into the street and shot, lynched, skinned alive, dipped in
a vat of acid, hacked into pieces and fed to wild wolves. You
get the idea.
Moving beyond the genre and onto the actual album, The Get
Up Kids' latest effort, Guilt Show. When reading the
novel that is their press kit, one thing is apparent above all
else: everyone is totally impressed that these guys have been
around for seven years, have kids, and have magically gotten older
(Surely not, no! How ever did they do it?). Somehow all of this
must mean that they've matured musically. No. I don't care if
they're old geezers; I don't care if they've gotten married and
knocked up their wives; I don't care if they've gone from mostly-punk-with-pop-gloss
of this makes their music "mature." It's still the stuff
that rich teens from the suburbs rock out to when daddy lets them
borrow the car and run downtown with their friends.
Am I objecting to their lyrical content? Absolutely not. I
have no problem with angsty, emotional, skillfully crafted lyrics.
Everyone has gone through those emotions at some point in their
lives; everyone can identify. In fact, if their lyrics were
put to any other kind of music on the planet earth, I would
be a fan of the Get Up Kids. I can say this with some amount
of certainty because their brief departure from the rape of
1970s counter-culture in "Is There A Way Out" and
"Conversation" is actually a beautiful example of
what they COULD do, but choose not to. And that's fine. Just
don't make me listen to it.
In summary: if you're the type who enjoys shopping for studded
leather wristbands at Hot Topic, then this album is a must-have.
It is well written, well produced, and actually has a little
more scope than your average, run-of-the-mill pop punk band.
Otherwise, pull the two above-mentioned tracks off the Internet
and don't waste your time with the rest.
Something tells me this is the last time my editor's going
to send me a pop punk CD.
- Emily Strong
1. Man of Conviction
2. The One You Want
3. Never Be Alone
4. Wouldn't Believe It
5. Holy Roman
6. Martyr Me
7. How Long Is Too Long
8. Sick In Her Skin
9. In Your Sea
11. The Dark Night of the Soul
12. Is There A Way Out
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