Gents on Loan – From the Start

Artist: Gents on Loan

Song: From the Start

Genres:  #poppunk #punkrock

Location: Ottawa, Canada

Release date: July, 2021.

Comment: During the pandemic, many of us found ourselves with some extra downtime and that was the case for six musicians from various local bands in Ottawa, who decided to collaborate remotely and have some fun, hence the name Gents on Loan. From The Start is the first song to come out of that impromptu collaboration and it is a radio friendly punk rock song that will fill fans of the genre with renovated energy. Give it a listen!

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DYGL – Half of Me

Artist: DYGL

Song: Half of Me

Genres:  #alternativerock #poppunk

Location: Tokyo, Japan

Release date: July, 2021.

Comment: Formed in 2012, DYGL (pronounced “Day-glo”) is an indie rock band from Japan that sounds incredibly good. Half of Me, for example, is all kinds of catchy with a touch of pop-punk rhythms. Their press release calls it a “killer tune” and, quite frankly, I have to agree with that. This song is one of the singles off their latest release, A Daze In A Haze, which is well worth a listen.

I hope this is just the start of a trend of great rock music coming out of Japan. We need this.

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The Summer Set – Street Lightning

Artist: The Summer Set

Song: Street Lightning

Genres:  #alternativerock #poppunk

Location: Arizona, United States

Release date: September, 2021.

Comment: The Summer Set, a pop-punk band from Scottdale, Arizona that after achieving a decent following went on a hiatus in 2017, surprised their fans in August when they announced that they were back to making music and dropped their first single in 4 years. Street Lightning is as catchy as anything they’ve ever released with, as depicted in the music video below, some 80s music vibes that fit it really well. As lead singer Brian Logan Dales described it on his Instagram: “This song is about chasing the high of life as fast as you can, written by a guy who finally learned how to slow down and take in everything around him.”

Enjoy!

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Caroline Romano – The Hypothetical

Artist: Caroline Romano

Song: The Hypothetical

Genres: #PunkRock, #PopPunk

Location: Nashville, United States

Release date: July, 2021.

Comment: 19-year-old Nashville-based artist Caroline Romano has just dropped this pop-punk banger that sounds really refreshing. She’s young but wise beyond her years and you just have to listen to The Hypothetical to know that she’s going places. No doubt.

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The Camel City Blackouts – Swing or Sway

The Camel City Blackouts were featured here back in May with their single Another Night and now they’re back with a new EP, Wild Card, featuring three brand new tunes. Swing or Sway is the one that kicks things up with three minutes of this fine blend of energetic #punkrock music and #alternativerock. The vocals are also pretty enjoyable, which is not something you can say about most songs within the same genre. I should give a special mention as well to the second track: Memory, which got a great chorus as well.

The bottom line is that if you like punk-influenced music, you should give this band from Winston-Salem, North Carolina, a chance. They won’t disappoint.

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Back On Earth – Anybody

A little over a year ago, I featured French #punkrock band Back On Earth and since then they have released track after track with remarkable consistency, both in frequency and quality. Just recently, they dropped a small little EP called Anybody that consists of three previously released songs and a brand new one, the eponymous track. All four songs are really good but I particularly liked Anybody. This song is the whole package: it got a captivating melody, flawless production, and lyrics worth writing home about. If you have ever questioned the purpose of everything, this song is for you.

Don’t lose sign of Back On Earth. They deliver.

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SR-71 – Last Man On The Moon

If you have heard of SR-71 at all (the band, not the aircraft), it’s probably because of their 2000’s hit single Right Now, which got a lot of airplay back then. It was their only hit from their underrated debut album, Now You See Inside, but I consider it to be barely the fourth best song on that record. The band from Baltimore, Maryland, went on to release two additional studio albums before calling it quits in 2004 (they had a brief reunion playing some shows together around 2009) and SR-71‘s frontman, Mitch Allan, is still active today as a pretty successful music producer. While they never had another hit as big as Right Now, it could be argued that one track from their last studio album was even bigger because the version of 1985 played by Bowling For Soup became a huge hit without most people even being aware that it was a cover.

Anyway, going back to SR-71’s debut album, the song I tend to play again and again is usually Last Man On The Moon. I love those drums and the overall melody of the track, as well as the way the bridge transitions back into the chorus. The lyrics are enjoyable although not as good as the lyrics for another track in that album: Alive, but I will leave that for another post. Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy this week’s #ThrowbackThursday entry as much as I do.

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My Favorite Highway – Getaway Car

Earlier this week, I mentioned My Favorite Highway as an “obscure” reference. That’s because after one album and a couple of EPs as independent releases, they only released one full album, How To Call a Bluff –in 2008, and then re-released with a couple of extra songs in 2009 under a different label–, as signed artists before quickly disbanding in 2010. Some of their songs from that album appear on some popular shows around that time and they toured with artists such as Hellogoodbye and Kelly Clarkson; but, nevertheless, chances are that you have never heard of them. They never became that popular.

That is a shame, though. This band, originally formed in 2004 by two brothers from Fairfax, Virginia, was really good at writing infectious #poprock tunes that you simply could not get enough of. I think the best example of that was their single Getaway Car, which has a chorus to die for. I really mean it. No matter what mood you are in on any given day, as soon as that chorus starts, it is impossible to remain neutral to it. As this week’s #ThrowbackThursday entry, please let me introduce you to a #musicalcrush of mine from the late 2000s. Hope you like it!

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The Camel City Blackouts – Another Night

Ryan Sizemore and Derek Gilreath are both from Winston-Salem, North Carolina –also known as “The Camel City”–with a shared love for punk rock and having a good time. This prompted them to form their own band in 2015, The Camel City Blackouts, with their debut album being published in late 2019. This year, they released an EP titled 13 that consists of 2 tracks: Angels and Another Night, plus an acoustic version of the latter. All in all, this EP showcases what The Camel City Blackouts are about.

Another Night is a fun and energetic punk song about being addicted to something (alcohol, in particular) and not being able to keep it under control. The Camel City Blackouts grab your attention from the start with this track and never let it go. What I really like about Another Night is that the band found the right balance between a vibrant rhythm and noise (which is something many punk songs don’t achieve), and the result is quite an enjoyable rock song delivered flawlessly. In addition to that, as you can perceive in their self-made music video below, it is evident that they have lots of fun playing music and that has a positive impact over what they do. Also, is it just me or there is a hint of The Strokes in this song? Anyway, don’t sleep on this fun band.

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Sum 41 – With Me

To me, there are two sides to Sum 41: a lighter, punk-rock embracing one and a darker, guitar-heavy, metal-flirting side. They used to oscillate from one side to another with each album but after switching to the darker side on the album that followed 2009’s excellent Underclass Hero, they seem to have decided to stay there. This coincides with the return of lead guitarist and founding member Dave Baksh to the band in 2013, after a 9-year break. They have released a handful of songs that I like during this time, but the above mentioned Underclass Hero was their last album I truly loved. What can I say? I don’t enjoy metal that much.

That record includes several standout tracks but I’ve decided to feature today one that I didn’t love right away. I don’t know why though, because With Me is truly a great song. As with a few other tracks from Underclass Hero, it’s likely based on frontman’s Deryck Whibley failing relationship with Avril Lavigne, his wife at the time. Besides Deryck’s ability to transmit his raw emotions, what sets this song apart is the great drum part from former band member Steve Jocz. It’s really hard to get those drums out of your head.

Anyway, here’s this week’s #ThrowbackThursday entry: With Me by Sum 41.

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