Every now and then, hardcore punk fans like me need to get up on our hipster high horse and complain about something. After we’re done planning our next Black Flag tattoo, we’ll make ourselves some dark coffee, hop onto our Twitter accounts and complain about one thing: pop-punk.
We’ll complain that it sounds nothing like punk rock, that all of the fans are annoying and that the lyrics are meaningless. We’ll basically moan about a load of bullshit that doesn’t matter to us, and in the mean time good punk albums with pop influences will go under our radar. Face To Face‘s new album is the latest to be ignored by this group of hipster punks, which is a shame ’cause it’s an absolute corker.
Face To Face are punk veterans who have been going since the early 90s. Not a lot of bands can get 22 years (with a 4 year hiatus in the middle) into their career without a major change in sound. Whilst some albums were more ‘single heavy’ than others, Face To Face have always seemed to keep their modern punk sound, even after their 2008 reunion. This album can be considered the fist real change in sound of the band’s career.
‘Three Chords And A Half Truth’ sees FTF venture down a path of more melodic songwriting, and the result sounds like Face To Face playing songs as catchy and anthemic as Rancid. Whilst some may miss the heavier feel of older FTF, most will welcome the change as it delivers catchy and infectious punk tunes. Memorable and enjoyable choruses will have you humming along on your second or third listen. When songs like ‘Welcome Back To Nothing’, ‘Right As Rain’ and ‘Across State Lines’ kick in, you’ll great them with the reaction of “Oh yeah! This one!”.
Whilst it does seem reminiscent of pop-punk in parts, it should in no way be considered a pop-punk album, it’s more like a melodic punk. Pop-punk usually implies a weaker and more ball-less sound than this album provides, it’s still got it’s punk guts and balls in its instrumental section. This isn’t Man Overboard, if you want songs about friends and pizza then I suggest you look elsewhere. But, if you want punk rock that’s catchy but actually still sounds punk rock, stick with this album, a good time is promised.
So, next time you see a grumpy punk fan like me sitting under their Henry Rollins shrine whilst complaining about The Story So Far whilst secretly liking them, give them a heads up about this record, because both this album and this band have tragically fallen under most punk fans radars.
Written by Jack King
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS! | Atheist and antitheist. | Judge of the quick & the dead since 1989.