Release Date : June 15th, 2017
Review by: Mike Mulè
Record Label: Pure Noise Records
Let me first start off by saying: HELLO! It’s been a while and good to be back! How is everyone? Hope all is well! And that’s enough of that!
If you’ve been MIA since 2013, purposefully ignored the scene’s heavy hitters, or maybe just now getting into this wide genre known as pop punk, you should definitely know that State Champs just put out a new record. Let us discuss shall we?
For the last 6 years or so, State Champs have steadily been chasing the quintessential punk rock kids dream; from playing music with a group of friends in a garage, to huge sold out stages.
Being the giant power-band that they have become in those short years, some changes are to be expected with such a growth in career. I’m talking song structure change, production value, and much more. I’ll tell you what, after one listen through, you’ll undoubtedly hear how insanely awesome a pop punk song can own the term ‘pop’. It may not be up everyone’s alley, but maybe you should get off those old roads and try a new route. Living Proof, in my opinion, is a great example of progression and growth.
While clearly on a more radio friendly side, State Champs are definitely sticking to their pop punk roots. Evident early in the album in the hard striking chorus of ‘Dead and Gone’ to the Hit The Lights-esque breakdown/bridge in ‘Lightning’, the guys know how to keep what got them here in the first place and mix it up with what they’ve learned on their few times around the world and back (I had to, c’mon).
Roughly half way through the album, we get to ‘The Ballad’. After playing arenas and stadiums, you’re bound to write the, what I like to now call, “sea of phone lights” song. But even in ‘Our Time To Go’ they can sneak some punk attitude in there. If you listen hard enough, the gang chants will come.
Moving on, you’ll see that State Champs doesn’t stray too far from the musical formula they’ve concocted. Which isn’t a problem at all, but if you’re antsy like me, your eyes dart to that “next” button fairly often.
Still, this album is for anyone that enjoys slight riffage, super poppy/solo bedroom dance partyable songs that will definitely get stuck in your head. All in all, this latest album is just a feel good record from a feel good band. If you don’t believe me, check them out on Warped Tour and see that when it comes to young kids living out their dreams, they are indeed, .