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Chumped have managed to capture some serious emotion on their debut full length ‘Teenage Retirement,’ and they have done so in a fairly relaxed, playful way. The Brooklyn based band represents the basement rock sound of the region quite well, albeit fairly clean-cut, their sense of melody is overwhelming. The guitars radiate and sing as much as the vocals do for a melodic overload with frontwoman Anika Pyle’s high pitched vocal working against the full bodied tones perfectly.
Old and Tired starts out with some simple palm-muting and the vocal lines in an almost suggestive way that this is all the band needs, when the song explodes however it is obvious they can offer much more. There is a lo-fi feel that runs underneath everything that gives this band a unique spin, unique in the way that they manage to keep things bright and fun whilst also offering sad and desperate lyrics to offset the major chords.
The group channel some Blink 182 in the bass line to Something About Geography before bringing in an upbeat pace on fuzzed out punk in Songs About Boats. Whilst the punk rock moments such as Novella, Ella, Ella, Eh, are a lot of fun, the album highlight, Anywhere But Here, is a good representation of where the group thrive. It’s like old-school Weezer, or that Jimmy Rogers lo-fi careless rock of the late-90’s that seems to be making a bit of a comeback.
The band’s overall penchant for pop-punk seems to override these grunge like moments however as the seem to always go back to some fast paced numbers like Penny, in which the male/female vocals in tandem add a nice bit of colour to everything. The record closes with Hot 97 Summer Jam, a fairly straight forward rock song that possibly isn’t up to the calibre of what came before it, but is still a bit of fun.
Chumped’s debut is fun, relaxed, deep, melodic and simple. Its a strong start and a quality addition to the grunge/lo-fi revival.
1. December Is The Longest Month
2. Old and Tired
4. Novella Ella Ella Eh
5. Anywhere But Here
6. Name That Thing
7. Songs About Boats
8. Long Division
9. Something About Geography
11. The Pains Of Being?
12. Hot 97 Summer Jam