ALBUM REVIEW: The Greatest Generation - The Wonder Years
The Wonder Years - The Greatest Generation
Release Date: May 14th, 2013
Record Label: Hopeless Records
Reviewer: Devin Beaudoin
The Wonder Years are one of those bands that have gotten so much better with every record they’ve put out, every tour they’ve done, every country they’ve traveled to. We’ve watched them grow up, from writing joke songs about Cap’n Crunch and ninjas, to fighting depression. They’re easily one of the most relatable bands out there right now, with a song for every tough situation you could even imagine, and The Greatest Generation is no exception. This record is The Wonder Years’ finest work to date. They’ve pushed the envelope of pop punk again, just when you thought they couldn’t do it any more.
The record clocks in at just under 50 minutes, which is very lengthy for a pop punk record, but this album doesn’t have any filler tracks. ‘There, There,’ the first track on the record starts slow, but builds up to the emotional second half of the song where you can basically feel vocalist Dan ‘Soupy’ Campbell’s energy as if you were front-row-center at a TWY show. The rest of the album does not fail in comparison to this first track.
Guitarists Matt Brasch, Nick Steinborn, and Casey Cavaliere have challenged themselves musically with the riffs they wrote for this record. The way the three guitars are perfectly layered and compliment each other fluently throughout the record is flawless, especially on ‘Teenage Parents’ and ‘Chaser.’ Bassist Josh Martin and drummer Mike Kennedy hold down the fort with blood pumping bass and drums (check out ‘We Could Die Like This.’) I’ve been a Wonder Years fan since 2008, and seeing the six of these guys really hone their craft and this genre is incredible.
The band keeps you guessing with this record. ‘Dismantling Summer’ reminds me a lot of 90s rock, ‘The Devil In My Bloodstream’ is almost ballad-esque, (as ballady as you can get with a pop punk record) with guest vocals coming from Laura Stevenson. ‘An American Religion [FSF]’ is almost an alt-rock track with edgy, distorted guitars, and angry, gritty vocals from Soupy. ‘Madelyn’ is a little acoustic diddy reminiscent of 2010’s ‘Hey Thanks’ (off of The Upsides). The record finishes out with a 7 1/2 minute medley which features throwback lyrics to songs from Generation, (I was kinda hoping you’d stay / I need you to stay / Two blackbirds on a highway sign), which brings us back to 2010’s war cry of ‘I’m not sad anymore.’
The Wonder Years aren’t one of those bands to change their sound drastically and say that they “matured.” They’re that band that knows what they’re good at, but instead of making the same record over and over, they grow and change that genre. I have no doubts in my mind that the genre of pop punk today would not be the same without the addition of The Wonder Years. The Wonder Years are, have been, and always will be a force to be reckoned with. The Greatest Generation is, as of now, my favourite album of 2013, and has probably eased its way into one of my favourite albums of all time.
NEW RELEASE: The Devil In My Bloodstream - The Wonder Years
The Wonder Years have released another brand new song from their upcoming album, The Greatest Generation, titled ‘The Devil In My Bloodstream.’ The track features Laura Stevenson, and will be fully released to the public in just 6 (!!!) days!
The Wonder Years To Guest Host Man Overboard’s Radio Show
This Monday, May 6th, at 7PM EST, The Wonder Years will guest host Man Overboard’s radio show on Idobi Radio. TWY will be DJing songs, answering some questions and may even have some surprises in store for you guys! If you wanna leave a message for the guys, and have it possibly aired on the show call (856) 418-0710.
Wanna Ask The Wonder Years A Question?
The Wonder Years have come up with this really cool idea where you upload a ~15 second clip of yourself asking them a question on Vimeo, and then they’ll watch them and compile the answers. Click Read More to watch a funny little video from vocalist Dan Campbell.