In what might be one of the most pleasantly angst-filled albums of the punk revival, Max Bemis gets back to the earlier, more thematic days of Say Anything on Anarchy, My Dear. With a sound that leans more toward the pop side of pop-punk, the album creates a nice contrast between the pleasant melodies of the songs and the seething, dissatisfied lyrics that rest on top of them. That spirit of discontent is prevalent throughout the entire album, which finds Bemis taking the opportunity to lash out at the world around him in a gesture of anti-cool catharsis. While his target seems to be society, the singer seems to especially delight in taking shots at so-called hipster culture, with songs like "Admit It Again" taking shots at a music scene that he perceives as throwing him aside for the next big thing in what quickly turns from a pleasant tune to an uncomfortable rant in no time at all. While this hatred toward hipsters and the hipster things they do because they're hipsters makes for an awkward detour, the rest of the album doesn't dwell on it, shaking off the hate and quickly getting back to a more subdued, pop-friendly general rage against society that shows off Say Anything's edgier side while still maintaining the penchant for catchy songwriting that brought fans to them in the first place.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney