Comment: Caroline Romano is back with a new single, “girl in a china shop”, and it’s, as they say in the UK, a ‘banger.’ Having written about her twice before, it’s clear that Romano is not just a passing phase, but a force to be reckoned with in the alt-pop scene.
The Nashville-based singer-songwriter has once again demonstrated her knack for capturing the essence of young adulthood in her music. “girl in a china shop” is an emotional rollercoaster, with an explosive chorus that contrasts beautifully with its reflective verses. In the lyrics, Caroline admits to feeling like she breaks everything she touches, and this song is her way of acknowledging that feeling.
With millions of streams already under her belt, and more music on the way, it’s clear that Caroline Romano is an artist whose star will only continue to rise. We can’t wait to see what she does next.
Comment: I’ve managed to secure tickets to see blink-182 live in London next week, and needless to say, my excitement is off the charts. It’s this exhilaration that led me to feature their latest track, “One More Time,” today. It’s safe to say that I haven’t been this thrilled about a new blink-182 song since the release of “I Miss You.” This new track, in my opinion, stands shoulder to shoulder with the classics, especially when you consider the nostalgic elements present in the music video, the lyrics, and the reunion of Tom DeLonge with the band (also, Travis vocals!). I want to acknowledge that Matt Skiba did a commendable job as a replacement, but what truly made blink-182 special was the dynamic trio of Tom, Mark, and Travis.
By the way, they released another new track last night called “Dance With Me,” and it sounds fantastic. I can’t wait for the new album to be released.
Comment: I have written about the talented Toronto-based band Nerimatwicebefore, but, after listening to their recent single “Penance”, I knew I had to do a third time. It’s a stunning piece of music that explores the themes of guilt, regret and forgiveness, and I seriously think this is their more mature-sounding track.
The song starts with a gentle acoustic guitar and Alexi delicately singing the first few verses, but by the time the chorus starts, the full band has come in to increase the energy levels. The contrast between the verses and the chorus creates a dynamic and captivating sound that keeps you hooked until the end. The song also features some beautiful harmonies.
“Penance” by Nerima is a song that you should definitely listen to if you enjoy indie rock with a touch of punk-rock. It will make you feel something. Even happiness for witnessing the evolution of such a talented band.
Comment: “Spanish Moss” by Against Me! is an energizing track from their 2010 album White Crosses. This punk rock anthem talks about the need to be who you are without feeling ashamed for it, which takes some extra meaning once you learn about the lead singer’s backstory, who back then was not known as Laura Jane Grace.
The music is catchy and powerful, with driving drums, soaring guitars and Laura Jane Grace’s passionate vocals. Given the fact that this great tune turned 13 last month, I thought it would be a good choice for #ThrowbackThursday. So turn up the volume, sing along and let Spanish Moss take you on a journey. You won’t regret it.
Comment: All Time Low was one of the first bands featured on T.A.M., and almost three years later (time flies!), they have returned with their eponymous single: Tell Me I’m Alive. This is also the title of the band’s ninth studio album, their first release since the pandemic. The first three quarters of the track showcase a more mature sound for the band, with pop elements infused into their punk style and even the addition of a piano to back the vocals. It is not until the bridge that All Time Low switch gears up with classic punk drum lines and high energy levels. I’m not a fan of songs that rely too heavily on this drumming style, but when used sparingly as is the case here, they can be a brilliant addition.
All Time Low was formed in 2003 in Baltimore, Maryland. The band members, consisting of lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist Alex Gaskarth, lead guitarist Jack Barakat, bassist Zack Merrick, and drummer Rian Dawson, gained popularity with their pop punk sound and catchy lyrics. Throughout their career, All Time Low has toured extensively and earned a dedicated fan base, selling over 2 million records worldwide. With their continued success and loyal fan base, All Time Low has cemented themselves as one of the most prominent bands in the pop punk and rock music scene.
Comment: I hadn’t done one of these (#ThrowbackThursday entries) in a while, mostly due to a lack of time, not a lack of songs. In fact, I wanted to feature Sugarcult last week, after they kindly liked a tweet in which I mentioned them, but alas, I ran out of time. This band from Santa Barbara, California, started in 1999 and had a pretty successful debut studio album in 2001, during the hey-day of early 2000s punk-rock –by the way, last year they re-release that album in its 20th anniversary–. However, something I liked about them was that they were not afraid to experiment and try new sounds: none of their three studio albums sound alike.
Despite still being active (after a hiatus), they have not released a new album since 2006’s Lights Out, which is the one that features today’s track: Do It Alone. This song was the first single off that album and probably ahead of its time, because it wasn’t even as successful as the second single (Los Angeles). I think part of the reason why was that it sounded closer to the music of bands that were becoming popular then, like The Killers, than what Sugarcult had released before. It was our loss, though, because the single was really outstanding and perhaps, in a parallel world in which both track and album were a massive success, we would have had many more Sugarcult albums.
Comment: Twenty-year-old Nashville-based artist Caroline Romano was featured here last August (at the age of 19) with her song ‘The Hypothetical,’ part of her new album, ‘Oddities & Prodigies,’ released in February. The album, highly recommended, includes great songs like the aforementioned one and ‘Grocery Store,’ among others. However, my favorite track by far is the eponymous ‘Oddities & Prodigies,’ even better than ‘The Hypothetical.’ If you enjoy catchy #poprock songs, you might find it perfect. Check it out
Comment: I could mention here words like “magnetic” and “catchy”, but the bottom line is that I Can’t Afford Her is a really fun track. When you hear the backstory of this tune from London-based 3-piece act The New Twentys, you realise that it could not be any other way. The song is about a misunderstanding one of the band members had with his girlfriend after she saw a video in which he was talking to a prostitute. However, this happened after a nigh out and he hadn’t even realised she was a sex worker, he was just asking for directions but, boys being boys, his friends found it funny and decided to film the whole interaction. When confronted about it, in the middle of the argument with his girlfriend, he said: ‘Well what does it matter? I’m broke and couldn’t afford her anyway.’ Not really the most reassuring defense in that situation. The music video, which you can watch below, pokes fun at the whole situation too. Have a blast!
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.
Accurately self-described as genre-fluid, 30 is a versatile singer/songwriter from Massachusetts with over 220k monthly listeners on Spotify. In his latest EP, The Introspects Of A Psycho, which is a philosophical introspection into the life of a girl spiralling out of control who is important to the narrator, the artist moves swiftly from rap and hip-hop to alternative rock. While the former genres aren’t really my cup of tea, I certainly dig 30‘s rocker side, such as in the appealing Lost In Colorado.
This tune is a stripped down, guitar-based track with metaphorical lyrics and an engaging melody. The chorus, in particular, is one of those that keeps playing in your head long after the song has ended. It is obvious that 30 got a creative mind that will push him to explore different styles. Hopefully, he will keep a balanced approach and continue embracing his alternative side from time to time.