PUP, formerly Topanga, have established in the punk rock business during the last years. The Toronto band releases their fourth studio album The Unraveling of PUPTheBand on 1st April 2022. I was able to stream the songs before release date. Here are my thoughts.
PUP – About The Artists
PUP has been founded as Topanga in Toronto in 2010. Since then, they play in the same lineup. Stefan Babcock is the lead singer of the band and plays the rhythm guitars. Steve Sladkowski is the lead guitarists, which Nestor Churnak is the bassist and keyboarder of the band. Zack Mykula is on the drums and percussion. In 2013, the band released their first album PUP after having published two EPs as Topanga. The band’s last album release has been Morbid Stuff in 2019. The album overall gained very nice critics. One year later, they also published the EP This Place Sucks Ass. Their 2016 song DVP has almost 19 million streams on Spotify only.
PUP – The Unraveling of PUPTheBand – Track by Track
The twelve song album lasts 36 minutes.
1. Four Chords
The first two minutes are dedicated to Four Chords. The piano and not-that-perfectly-recorded vocal part song rather works as an intro to the eleven tracks, which additionally lie ahead to the listener (okay, there are two more Four Chords included in this one as well…). Nonetheless, there is some power and energy in the second part of the intro.
2. Totally Fine
Totally Fine is the first of three single releases in a row of the album. A song as you imagine punk rock to be: cheeky, powerful and with a lot of guitar. And with that direct sense of irony.
Lately I’ve started to feel like I’m slowly dying
And if I’m being real I don’t even mind
I was holding back coz I just couldn’t decide
Whether I’m at my worst or I’m totally fine
3. Robot Writes A Love Song
Many tracks have a nice sense of irony and humor on this album, but this third song is one I especially enjoyed while listening. A bit of an naive touch in the melody and vocal performance and a great work on the lyric side. This is how this track is starting:
You were dead
I saw your corpse rolling out the door
But I backed up your memory before
They came for you, your monitor was blue
But your data’s all stored
And when they come back with your new body
I’ll load you into the new machine again
And bring you back to me
Matilda is a nice track somewhere between punk and indie rock. Good work on the instruments which a nice change between rather rough sounds and quite melodic parts.
Relentless is a nice follow-up to Matilda. Maybe a bit too less changes in sound compared to the predecessor – but a good rock listening experience.
6. Four Chords Pt. II: Five Chords
Same style, time to laugh and enjoy. This Four Chords interlude is just 28 second.
No doubt: out of the seven tracks so far, Waiting is coming with the hardest sound of all. The guitar players are doing full force – sometimes, that feels a bit much. Some hardcore punk feeling in here, for sure.
The eighth song feels like such a massive contrast to the song before. The sounds feels like using a electronic sounds already. A very unique song – but the songwriting on the lyrics side again tells you: this is a PUP song:
But if I want your hooks out of me
I can’t make this a habit
Trying to keep it together but
I was too distracted
By the part of me that’s been lacking the most
9. Cutting Off The Corners
Rough sounds and a distorted choir of vocals – Cutting Off The Corners definitely presents a new sound to The Unraveling of PUPtheband. I just have to admit that this track is rather on the bottom of my musical buddy list.
10. Grim Reaping
Agian, the instruments are more present than the vocals on this song. Maybe some preparation to what it will be like when the Canadians tour Europe later in 2022 anyway. The chorus is cool, I struggle to get into the overall sound of the track, though.
11. Four Chords Pt. III: Diminishing Returns
Four Chords gets shorter and shorter. Don’t do a pee break here – it is just a nine second track.
12. PUPTHEBAND Inc. Is Filing For Bankruptcy
In the very final track of what the band itself calls their best album so far, PUPTHEBAND Inc. Is Filing For Bankruptcy. Can’t be because of their music though. And if you liked the songs before, you will definitely love this chucker-out.
PUO – The Unraveling of PUPTheBand – Spotify
Here is the album on Spotify:
PUP – The Unraveling of PUPTheBand – My View
I love weird music. Thus, I just have to have a crush for PUP and their music. Some songs are a bit too much for me, I feel they push a bit too much towards the limits. Overall, The Unraveling of PUPTheBand is definitely a good listening experience, though. Thus, I absolutely suggest you to dare a listen if you are in that genre.
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