When was the last time you put a record on, and had absolutely no expectations.
When was the last time you did that, and the music that followed found its way into your head, and got stuck there?
That just happened, this past Friday. It was a big day for new releases - there were some of my all-time favourites releasing new albums: Slick Shoes, Deftones - and there were some newer bands I was excited for as well: Goalkeeper, Wilmette. What I wasn't expecting was to fall in love with something unfamiliar to me.
Here's the funny thing about this band being 'unfamiliar' to me - there's something incredibly familiar about their sound.
The band is the creation of Mike Weakley, based out of Phoenix. When he started writing this music, he was looking to bring together classic influences like New Found Glory, and blink-182 and throw them in a big mixing bowl with bands like The Story So Far and Neck Deep.
What he has created is something that shows off all of those influences, but makes this completely his own sound.
By taking all the best parts of those influences, he immediately creates something new, and incredibly familiar. For good measure, his vocals also remind me quite a bit of Mayday Parade.
The album starts off with the song Never Too Late - it fades in with an Angels & Airwaves-esque synth, before exploding into glossy pop punk showing off all of those influences.
Far Beyond is an excellent second track that helps to move the album along. Showing off those Neck Deep and blink-182 influences.
A Lost Boy continues that trend, with an opening riff that would find its home on an Angels & Airwaves record - hell, even the track title sounds like an AVA song.
It's easy to go through this record and pick out the influences one by one. It'd be easy to write the record off as unoriginal because it wears those influences so plainly on its sleeve - but this record goes beyond that.
The standout track on the record, for me, has to be Disconnect. It's probably the most aggressive song on the album, making for a nice mid-album banger.
FigureItOut isn't simply a knock off band, these songs are solid, well constructed pop punk jams. The bonus of the influences being so in your face, is that it becomes incredibly easy to feel right at home.
For more new music, check out our review of the latest record from Goalkeeper.