For Fans Of
What’s more pop-punk than singing about feelings and not getting any sleep? That beast of a pizza delivery guy from the States who got stabbed in the back, went and delivered the fucking order, and only then checked himself into the damn hospital, that’s what! Oh, and Lowlight are pretty pop-punk too.
The Perth locals, and supposed massive Star Wars fanboys dropped their debut album on May 4th and it’s a strong first full-length to have under one’s sagging, slightly buckled up belt. It’s a dozen tracks of American sounding, punk jumping, pop-punk except you have way more of a chance of seeing these guys live, cause you know, they are Aussies!
But let’s get one thing straight right away – their sound is pretty familiar. So familiar in fact that it could enter your house at any time and you’d simply shrug and put on the kettle, instead of calling the police or brandishing a knife and protecting your family from this brave, casual up-front abode intruder. The chord progressions, the vocal harmonies, the melodies, and the lyrics – it’s all so pop-punk. So, so, very pop-punk that it’s drowning in fucking pop-punk cliches, but it’s those very same norms that are going to save it because while ‘Losing Sleep’ is a generic record in that regard, but it’s also a good one, and one that’s hard to knock back too. Well, if you forgive the first few songs that is, but we’ll get to that in a sec.
From the start of the album with ‘Concrete Castles’, right up to the end of the record with the angsty (and surprise stand out) ‘Distance’, the album’s flow is consistent and there aren’t really any curve balls thrown the listeners way. But that’s just it, the first five or songs do start to feel a little repetitive at the start, and honestly, variety is low on the light of Lowlight’s priorities (and damn, that pun wasn’t even on purpose). However, the album really does pick-up in the last half, and this is where the record truly shines. Tracks like ‘Die Alone’ and especially ‘Stories’ do go down a real treat, and the enthusiasm and energy of the band is suddenly revitalised in this second half, thank god, because this is the band really knocking things out of the park here.
Furthermore, due to the slightly shorter length of the title track and the faster style of ‘Reckless, Defensive‘, the better moments seem to come when the group is playing far more concisely. In fact, every song after the eponymous track is a straight-up banging jam that embodies the best parts of the modern pop-punk sound. And, as that happens, most of the time, it’s just more than enough to push this release over line from just ‘good’ to ‘fucking great’.
Your appreciation and enjoyment of this record will stem from how much you love the genre of pop-punk. If you have a banner of The Wonder Years or The Story So Far hanging up in your room somewhere, then yeah, check this record out immediately. If you throw up in your mouth a little at the thought that punk rock could be even remotely catchy and melodic, then keep your distance like this shit has got the plague (which it doesn’t). All in all, this a pretty solid debut from the dudes in Lowlight.
1. Concrete Castles
2. Bruised And Beaten
4. Wasted Words
5. Burnt At Both Ends
6. Losing Sleep
7. Reckless, Defensive
8. Die Alone
10. For All It’s Worth1