Chicago pop-punks World War Me probably won’t be winning any awards for “best band name” any time soon. Oh, and their debut studio album is also self-titled, and there’s a song on there bearing the name too, just for good measure. Talk about the least SEO-friendly release ever, guys.
Still, the five-piece have been drumming up some impressive hype for themselves after signing with relatively new label SharpTone Records earlier this year, and are now preparing to launch themselves into the stratosphere with their aforementioned full-length effort. Sadly, they fall slightly short of the mark.
The band list My Chemical Romance and New Found Glory amongst their influences (they might have even turned to From First To Last‘s song from their 2006 album ‘Heroine’ for their band name), and it couldn’t be more obvious. In fact, you’d be forgiven for thinking vocalist Stephen Krypel was a Gerard Way impersonator, and a damn good one at that.
Each track is laden with snappy riffs and self-deprecating lyrics, but unfortunately the overproduction does them no favours, and the whole thing just seems a little bit dated. Ten years ago, these guys would have been massive, but now it feels like they’re trying to swim after a long departed boat.
Still, it has to be said that they’re a talented bunch, and the album is certainly not without its highlights. Like their aforementioned influences, catchy hooks and anthemic choruses appear to be what World War Me do best, and to their credit, this album is packed with them.
‘Escape’, with its soaring, infectious melody, feels huge. ‘From The Fear’ brings in a killer bass line from Sean Daly. ‘Mr. Misery’ drips with delicious angst; “And I know that you’re famished and you’re weak at the knees / But I don’t care if you’ve got hell in your dreams”, spits Krypel.
When these guys are on, they’re really on, and it’s a hell of a lot of fun. It’s just a shame that these gems are sandwiched between filler tracks with lacklustre mixes and unnecessary guitar solos.
World War Me could, and most probably will, win over hordes of young fans who weren’t around in the pop-punk heyday of the mid 2000s. But, for those who were, well, you just can’t help but feel like you’ve heard it all before.
Written by Lottie Cook (@pixelottie)
Founder & Editor for DEAD PRESS!