Monday, May 2, 2011

Unwritten Law - 'Swan' Review (2011)

What a nice surprise it is when one of your favorite bands drop their new album out of the blue, without you having heard anything about it! It's like seeing a good old friend on the street--always nice, always got lots of things to say.

And for me Unwritten Law is such a band when it comes to clean cut punk rock. Scott Russo must be one of the best singers in punk right now (or hell, in all of punk's history), while UL always had great musicians adding their own extra elements, and not just "playing their instruments" as part of another punk rock band. Pat Kim; definitely an exceptional bassist. And on this album, Dylan Howard is doing a really great job on the drums.

So what is Swan all about and what should we expect from this old school yet always fresh punk rock outfit? Well, to be honest, some more of the all around goodness they've showed in the past: mainstream flirting, catchy punk rock (just like it used to be!), with lots of melancholic overtones and excellent musicianship. The lyrics are - like always with Unwritten Law - quite sad and grey, but show the strength of a person who goes all out and makes moves, a person who takes risks in life and is not afraid to lose.

Swan has its mainstream moments for sure, but it really is punk rock. Mainstream music lacks bands like Unwritten Law right now. I don't know if Swan means that this will be their swan song, their last album, but I surely hope that it's not. It's been six years since UL offered us anything and we'd hate to see them go now. Thanfully they're on 2011's Warped Tour so let's hope they're here to stay.

Hell yes! Time for punk rock and summer's always on the way!

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