Last month, Meat Wave released their second full-length for Side One Dummy, called The Incessant. Recorded by engineer Steve Albini, the album finds the band refining their take on unabashed, hook-heavy post-punk. We spoke with singer/guitarist Chris Sutter about the record’s lyrics, many of which address themes like confrontation and accountability, yet there’s also a sense of dark humor that’s discreetly built-in. Additionally, we talked about the album’s writing process, what it was like working with Albini, their upcoming European tour and more. The band’s lineup is solidified by bassist Joe Gac and drummer Ryan Wizniak, and don’t forget to check out their video for “Run You Out” after the interview. Continue Reading…
Side One Dummy – Release Date: 5/27/16
On their second full-length, Toronto’s PUP avoids the sophomore slump and instead delivers a record that clearly surpasses expectations. The album’s title is derived from a doctor’s visit in which singer/guitarist Stefan Babcock was told “the dream is over” in regards to his damaged vocal chords, but clearly the band was able to soldier on after two years of constant touring and create their defining work. On the record’s second track, “DVP,” PUP highlights what they do so well, and that’s alternate between reckless energy and precision arrangements, while simultaneously merging various genres. The song uses elements of punk and pop, along with an excess of gang vocals, to examine a failing relationship and comically dismiss its inevitable fate. “Sleep in the Heat” is a built around a shimmering, fuzzed-out guitar lead that helps to offset the heavy lyrical content. It’s undeniably catchy and definitely one of the album’s most prominent entries. “Can’t Win” features self-deprecating humor, subtle indie rock tendencies and an anthemic, shout-along chorus that’s sure to be a crowd favorite at shows. Additional highlights include a haunting, post-hardcore number called “The Coast” and a ballad titled “Pine Point,” which concludes the record on a hopeful note. The Dream Is Over finds PUP embracing pop influences and advancing their sound with great success. While a lot of the songs deal with disenchantment, there’s also an underlying sense of camaraderie and resolve, and that’s sure to appeal to PUP’s ever-expanding fanbase. Don’t hesitate to check out this album, as it’s likely one of the year’s best.
This fall, Meat Wave released their second album and first for Side One Dummy, entitled Delusion Moon. We recently spoke with singer/guitarist Chris Sutter and talked about what writing and recording the record was like, as well as what some of its songs are about. We also discussed the album’s cover art, some of the band’s recent tours and their plans for next year. Don’t forget to check out Meat Wave when they play Ian’s Party on Sunday, January 3rd at Double Door. Continue Reading…
Side One Dummy – Release Date: 4/08/14
PUP, which stands for Pathetic Use of Potential, formed in 2013 and hails from Toronto, Ontario. They’re one of the latest additions to Side One Dummy’s roster, and much like label-mates Restorations, PUP is comprised of especially talented musicians and their sound is uniquely original. They combine elements of power pop, indie rock, punk rock and straightforward rock ‘n’ roll to create a style that’s decidedly their own. They also play with a sense of youthful energy and just enough reckless abandon to make things interesting. The album begins with “Guilt Trip,” an angst-filled rant that evokes Pinkerton era Weezer, but with increased aggression and ferocity. It’s followed by “Reservoir,” which features post-punk guitar riffs, fist-pumping verses and a shout-along chorus. The band really hits its stride on “Mabu,” a melodic gem that offers numerous impressive guitar leads and a surplus of precisely-placed backing vocals. Other highpoints include the bouncy, shimmering pop of “Dark Days” and the driving, rhythm-heavy tune that is “Lionheart.” What shines through most about PUP is that the band members are longtime friends and therefore they’re extremely adept at playing together. This allows for creative and unpredictable songwriting that emphasizes the performance aspect. Since the release of their debut record last month, PUP has understandably received a lot of attention. Take a listen to their song “Mabu” below and get to know one of today’s most exciting up-and-coming bands.
Restorations are a band that defies classification. They combine elements of post-hardcore, indie rock and punk, together with thoughtful and accomplished songwriting, to generate a sound that’s both unique and engaging. Their songs cans be intricate and complex at times, but they also know when to just go for it and rock out with immense energy. In short, Restorations have crafted in LP2 what is arguably one of the most refreshing and impressive records of 2013. We caught up with the band before their recent show at Subterranean and talked with singer/guitarist Jon Loudon. We discussed their new album for Side One Dummy, their summer tour, future plans and more. Also, be sure to check out Restorations’ video for the song “D” after the interview.
Side One Dummy – Release Date: 4/02/13
Restorations are a five-piece band that formed in 2008 and hail from Philadelphia, PA. LP2 is their first album for Side One Dummy and it proves to be a layered and varied record that’s engaging from start to finish. “D” is the first song and it starts with interwoven guitar melodies that give way to a charging rhythm section before the emergence of some hypnotic and dizzying guitar work. Eventually the slightly worn yet assured vocals come in and the listener knows that they’re experiencing something uniquely special. “Let’s Blow Up the Sun” is an exceptional track that demonstrates the band’s understanding of dynamics and restraint. Around the two-minute mark the music quiets to just the singer and one guitar, but soon the rest of the band joins in and spends the duration of the song rockin’ out with reckless abandon. “Civil Inattention” sounds like an amped-up version of The Weakerthans, which is of course a good thing, while “New Old” is the album’s most punk-influenced entry, as well as its catchiest. LP2 concludes with “Adventure Tortoise,” an epic, personal closer that’s six minutes long but remains interesting throughout. Perhaps one of Restorations’ best attributes is the fact that they don’t sound like every other band that’s out there nowadays. They combine a variety of genres with skillful songwriting, resulting in a finished product that’s both distinctive and accessible. Don’t be surprised if you hear a lot more about these guys in the near future.