Settle Your Scores

Retrofit

Written by: PP on 23/01/2022 11:48:19

Cincinnati, Ohio-based Settle Your Scores will take you on a proper trip down the memory lane on their sophomore album "Retrofit". It's a fitting title considering how closely they've replicated the glory days of the early 2000s pop punk sound without sounding at all dated in the process. They even have a song called "1999", which is essentially about going back to the early days of the genre, where bands like New Found Glory and Blink 182 released their best albums. In other words, it's a rejuvenation of the bouncy, summery melodies that especially Fall Out Boy popularized on their seminal debut album "Take This To Your Grave" in 2003.

The harmonious vocals are overflowing with catchy hooks and sing-along choruses, and the instrumentation is played in a wonderfully energetic fashion. It's infectious from the get-go, and with "1999" paying direct homage to "Hit Or Miss" by New Found Glory in its opening riff, you know exactly where this magazine's heart is going to be with regards to this band. Songs like "Staring At The Ceiling" have the melancholic, emotionally-charged vocals in the lead, but always finish off on an upbeat note that's bound to turn any venue grounds into a trampoline-like surface within the crowd.

It also helps that vocalist Christian Fisher has excellent pipes; he's unafraid to drop down to slightly coarse mode to give variety to his otherwise higher pitched clean vocals as seen on "High Spirits", for instance. "Broken Heart Scenario" sees the band go with screams A Day To Remember style. It's primarily clean vocals sung brightly, though. Backing vocalist Jeffrey Borer essentially sounds like Patrick Stump in his early days in places, so there's also that ("The Way Things Used To Be" is literally a track name on this album).

While Settle Your Scores might not bring anything new to pop punk as such, they nonetheless sound fresh simply for the fact that few bands sound like early 2000s pop punk right now. That style was great back then and there's no reason why it shouldn't work today as well, especially when the expression is as sincere and spirited as the one on "Retrofit".

8

Download: 1999, Meant For Misery, Staring At The Ceiling
For the fans of: (old) Fall Out Boy, Hit The Lights, New Found Glory, All Time Low, Veara
Listen: Facebook

Release date 20.08.2021
Mutant League Records

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