[6 July 2010]
Education is the follow-up to Shark Speed’s debut album Seasick Music. It was produced by pop-punk ace Bob Hoag and mastered at The Blasting Room, the studio owned by members of the Descendents. This would seem to indicate the band’s pop-punk credentials are intact, but this EP falls much more on the “power-pop” end of the scale. Lead singer/rhythm guitarist Thayne Fagg has an easy, relaxed voice that makes everything he sings sound sort of happy, even when he wonders “Are all my devils the same as other men’s?” on the track “The Killing Kind.” Brothers Joe (lead guitar) and Jared (drums) Christiansen provide upbeat, bright songs that nicely complement Fagg’s voice. Shark Speed aren’t doing anything particularly daring or unique, but their songwriting is solid, and that’s a good place to start. Each of these four songs are distinct while sticking to the same basic sound, which makes Education an enjoyable release.