Over the past five years, Drug Church have been giving hardcore punk a fresh jolt of energy, using their inventive songwriting with Patrick Kindlon‘s impressive vocals, and their third album, ‘Cheer’, is no exception. It’s their first LP for Pure Noise Records, and holds a dark quirkiness in tone, offering something that is both different but familiar.
The album opens with ‘Grubby’, which can only be described as a big, shining piece of pop-punk with Kindlon‘s signature yell dotted all over it. It’s an impressive way to start to the record, and sets the standards high for the remainder of the album. They make it clear from this point on that they’re fuelled by pop.
‘DNA’ and ‘Weed Pin’ carry a similar feeling as well, but its use of dynamics is a lot sharper and more throttling, reminiscent of the more old school sound of the band. What is particularly noticeable throughout is that Drug Church are pushing for an explosive live sound on this track.
‘Unlicensed Hall Monitor’ pulls you in from the start, and definitely sets expectations of excitement for the band’s live shows whilst also making you want to shake off any worries that you may have. It’s the perfect little pick me up song for those moments when you just want to scream.
The track that diverts in sound slightly is ‘Conflict Minded’, which sees the band leaning into their darker tendencies and then some. That’s what makes it all the more interesting. It certainly appears more angry in comparison to the rest of the album, which is emotion.
What’s impossible to miss is the difference in melody that each song makes. No track is the same; in fact they are completely different and yet, the album works as a cohesive whole. A bit of 90s charm guides the fun of ‘Avoidarama’ – their ability for sassy vocals makes an appearance throughout this track.
Overall, Drug Church have created an impressive album that is full of everything – rage, sassiness, emotion, and it’s still enough to get you into the party mode. Combining impressive lyrics with a diverse range of melodies, ‘Cheer’ is their most unique release yet, but ultimately works a charm. Changing over to Pure Noise Records was the right move in order to explore their more poppy side without removing their original roots.