A well established band that still has a fire in them

Melodic hardcore punks Pennywise have been a staple on the scene for over 25 years, pushing their punk rock opinions and upsetting people as a result. This is their first album of all new material since vocalist Jim Lindberg rejoined in 2013.

Yes, there has been the Yesterdays album, a re-record of older material and unreleased stuff, but this one here is all fresh tasty new tunes.

Beginning  with a carefully played opening riff before the drums come rolling in, ‘Never Gonna Die’ is the Pennywise as everyone knows them: fast, melodic and political to a point. This steams straight into ‘American Lies’. Pennywise are pushing for something here with their intensity and some of their most forthright political lyrics since Land of he tFree? and From the Ashes, the fat of experimentation has been cut away while the band goes straight for the throat.

While Never Gonna Die is peppered with calls for the next generation to rise up and revolt and keep trying to effect positive change in the world around them, it is not all political doom and gloom. ‘Keep on Moving On’ and ‘Live While You Can’ hold true to the hardcore ethics of Positive Mental Attitude and striving forward despite the adversity of life that we all face. ‘She Said’ sees the whirlwind of music around it take a little step back so that the narrative of a life lived can step forward a little. This is as close to respite as the album gets, even though its subject matter feels very heavy in its nature.

From here, Pennywise show why they aren’t known for albums full of filler, as track after track keeps the adrenaline high with topics from the political to the personal covered. ‘All The Ways U Can Die’ is reaching out to fans in a dark place, a song of suicide prevention and positivity. The album ends as politically as it began, asking on ‘Listen’ and ‘Something New’ why political systems can’t be changed and altered in a system that feels broken.

This album isn’t out to make new fans or impress old ones. This is the sound of a well established band that still has a fire in them and questions to be answered. If you have found yourself turning away from Pennywise when they began playing more mid paced numbers a couple of albums ago, you will want to get back on board now. And if you haven’t listened to Pennywise before, what are you doing?

  1. Never Gonna Die
  2. American Lies
  3. Keep Moving On
  4. Live While You Can
  5. We Set Fire
  6. She Said
  7. Can’t Be Ignored
  8. Goodbye Bad Times
  9. Can I Get A Little Hope
  10. Won’t Give Up The Fight
  11. Can’t Save You Now
  12. All The Ways U Can Die
  13. Listen
  14. Something New