The Subways - 'Money and Celebrity' (cooking vynil) 4/5
OK guilty confession time. I have a bit of a soft spot for this type of lightweight home grown pop punk, recent releases by Zaptopeks, Kiria and The Skuzzies have really rang bell. Now I am finding myself develop a strong liking for this the third album from Essex upstarts The Subways.
Now all to often pop punk gets a bad press, mainly due to the endless wave of Blink 182 clones that have been flooding out of the states over the past ten years or so; and this is a shame, especially for our home grown take on the genre. For like so many other musical styles before UK bands have a good knack of taking something from over the pond and giving it a distinctive British vibe.
This album is a case a point. There are 12 cuts on offer here, 11 of which are packed with nice, slightly cheesy, but hellishly infectious little commercial punk numbers, none of which are over three and a half minutes long, packed with crisp riffs, tub thumping drums, loads of up beat choruses and plenty of woo woo woo and hay yeah sing along bits. All good, if slightly predictable stuff.
Over all I'm reminded of those classic early albums from The Zatopeks, especially on tracks like Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Friday, Like I Love You and It's A Party.But there is more to this album than that, the more you listen the more you begin to notice a real depth to both the music and the lyrics. Popdeath is groovy and cutting look at the price of fame, Down Our Street is a slice of social observation that reminds me of The Monkees classic 'Pleasant Valley Sunday' and Rumours is a bit of a rocker with some really tasty unison riffage on show.
Then we have 'the other track', Celebrity. Now I dunno if its a fault on my promo copy, but on this copy of the album the track is 3.23 of silence. It could be a pressing error, but even if it is, the effect is perfect - a song with nothing to say about people with nothing to say.
Over all this album is very well done, highly listenable and while it may not be earth shattering it is good fun and wont do the reputation of either The Subways or British pop punk in general any harm at all.
Worth a listen or five.
For fans of.... The Zatopeks, The Skuzzies, Babyshambles, Kiria etc...