Santa Cruz, California, punk band Good Riddance is a decade in and shows no signs of slowing down. The group gets the punk ball rolling with the rampant, energetic “Out of Mind”, which has everything in sixth gear, but they hit a wall with the power pop punk of “Texas”, which doesn’t show Good Riddance in its best light. The group can hit home runs with “Rise and Fall” and “Shame” that again have the teen-angst quotient in abundance, with a punchy punk structure that brings Sum 41 to mind. And “Darkest Days” has a bit of radio-friendly pop to it, but also has some Rancid vibes. Another keeper is “Tell Me Why”, which is easy to sink your teeth into, while they fly headlong into “Torches and Tragedies”, a pure punk number one could see creating a large mosh pit. At 14 songs, it might appear long, but it’s not, with most clocking in around two minutes and change, like the too ordinary “Regret”—nothing to write, email or Blackberry home about. “Boise” is worth a third or fourth repeated listen as it builds into something bigger and brighter, while “Save the Children” is merely adequate punk rock.
// Notes from the Road
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