ALBUM: This Time Next Year – Drop Out Of Life

Release Date: September 27th, 2011
Label: Equal Vision Records
Website: None available


Being just one of many up and coming pop-punk bands right now; This Time Next Year explode onto the scene with their sophomore album, ‘Drop Out Of Life’. The album is full of big, crunching riffs that will have you playing air guitar in no time at all. Huge choruses that will stick around in your head longer than the sight of your mum in her underwear. It’s a real throwback to the classic pop-punk sound of New Found Glory, which will have you rolling in the nostalgia.

The title track opener is probably the best introduction to the band (providing you are unfamiliar with them, if you are then you will know what I mean) that I could probably give. It’s a chirpy yet melancholy number that packs a punch and a big chorus. From this brilliant opener, the rest of album trundles merrily on through catchy songs like the bizarrely named ‘Spoontonic’ and ‘Get It, Got It, Good’ which, although cheery, really fail to catch the imagination.

This is a problem that TTNY seem to have throughout the entirety of this album; they chug happily along their one dimensional route without any sense of needing to do something different. Whilst they very much subscribe to traditional pop-punk ideals, there’s no shame in varying things up a little bit, especially when it comes to writing potentially brilliant songs like ‘Matchbook’, which just seems to be missing that extra spark to kick it to the next level. Part of the problem may be the monotone, nasally vocals of Pete Dowdalls, who manages to keep the same tone to every single one of the songs on this record. If he mixed it up a bit, the album may have a chance. It escapes me, the reason that the band have decided to move away from the dual vocal approach they took on their debut, ‘Road Maps And Heart Attacks’, is perhaps that was the extra dimension this album needs.

Overall, this isn’t an entirely bad record by any stretch of the imagination, and don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great that this sort of style is still being played in 2011 and good on the band for doing so. However, the record itself is one dimensional, monotone and frankly just a bit dull. Back to the drawing board I think lads and perhaps this time next year (yes, I know) they may produce an album that reflects the ability that is there.

Written by Oliver Thompson