Pop-punk has always been a thing right? It didn’t start with Green Day or Blink 182. Try not to dance to The Sex Pistols, “Anarchy In the UK”, and The Clash’s “Rudy Can’t Fail”, or anything by Husker Du. It really goes back to the likes of the Kinks, who are super underrated as a proto-punk band. But in reality, who doesn’t want to dance while throwing snarky, pouty faces at endearing fans wearing safety pins in their nostrils.
3PM – Slow Me Down Album Review
Reading this Baltimore trio’s bio, I was intrigued by their comparisons to Blink 182, Green Day and Yellowcard, three bands that I have always enjoyed. However, listening to Slow Me Down, the band I kept reminiscing about was Good Charlotte.
It’s puzzling why 3PM doesn’t make the same connection, as aside from the musical content, there are many similarities, including the fact that both are Eastern Maryland bands playing pop punk from the perspectives of young adults. Good Charlotte got a lot of crap in some circles for selling out; to me, that’s bullshit, they were what they were, talented young punks with a propensity to write songs that were catchy as hell. The fact that they sold a ton of records to pre-puscents was just icing on the Sweet 16 birthday cake.
This album, Slow Me Down, has the same kind of potential. The album offers good, likeable pop with a punk edge. The music might be a bit more guitar centric, but that’s just fine by me. The lyrics are a bit cheerier, and not as poignant as their brethren from The Old Line State, but still catchy.
Scott Montgomery’s guitar work is the highlight of Slow Me Down beginning immediately with the very first notes off of the first track “Something New.” Montgomery’s excellent guitar work also dominates “Lazer Tag” and carries “All Caught Up.” Brandon Millman’s drumming is solid and pulls the music together well. Unfortunately, Brendan Starks bass disappears in the mix, and is one big difference from the music of Good Charlotte, where Paul Thomas offered up killer bass in a prominent role. Starks’ vocals are solid and likeable, but might almost be too likeable, if you know what I mean?
The best tracks: “All Caught Up,” which could easily be a huge anthemic hit with young rockers, “Moving Day” a catchy rocker, “At Least I Tried” and the aforementioned “Something New.”
The album, produced earlier this year by Paul Leavitt (All Time Low), is the band’s second, and clearly shows their potential. As a young trio, I expect they’ll continue to grow, and if I had my choice, wouldn’t mind seeing them mimic some of the efforts of their Maryland pop punk predecessors.
Check it out below:
Last week, I saw the following concert line-up: Rancid, Blink 182, Against Me! and My Chemical Romance. Are you kidding me? Those four bands on the same bill? The folks in Vancouver had a great night! Four of today’s best punk and alternative bands under one roof. Nice! Hard to believe, but next year is Rancid’s 20th Anniversary, and they are planning a big tour to celebrate. We’ll provide more details as we get them.
Here’s one of my favorite Rancid tunes to whet your appetite: “Red Hot Moon.” Great tune, which is made even better by the site of the video shoot. This was filmed in front of the official favorite all-time club of RARA’s Farm, the now departed, CBGB’s. I still remember those sticker-clad, graffiti-covered claustrophobic backstage spaces, and miss them 🙂
Watch the video it really captures the essence of the band and the club.
Listening to Sirius XM’s 1st Wave, I had a flashback to some great years in the Philly live music scene. First, they played Robert Hazard’s “new wave” hit “Escalator of Life” and followed it with Joe Jackson’s “I’m The Man.” I realize Joe Jackson was a Brit, but the rocking title tune off of his 1979 album was covered fantastically by an under-appreciated Philly band, The Chasers.
As with many other Philly bands from the 80’s and 90’s, The Chasers and Robert Hazard were great live, and tore up the local stages for many years. Add in a host of other great live bands like The Hooters, Beru Revue, The A’s, The Daves and Tommy Conwell, and we were blessed with one hell of a good local music scene. Great days indeed!
Today, I’ll leave with you a cover tune that I stumbled across on Little Steven’s Underground Garage. Remember Ronnie James Dio and his hit “Rainbow In The Dark?” Check out this cover from Paola. I think she’s Swedish, but the internet is not exactly flowing with information about her. I can tell you that the song was released in 2003. Not sure how I missed it until now.. Enjoy – “Rainbow In The Dark.”
Later – Cretin