Wednesday, October 26, 2011
We Are the Union - Graveyard Grins
We Are the Union are at it again! It seems like it's been ages since they've put something out, but lucky for us it's a great one. About a week ago, those crazy kids from Ann Arbor released a digital EP on Paper + Plastick, and that EP is called 'Graveyard Grins', and it's pretty damn rad.
For those of you hermits who are unfamiliar with them, We Are the Union are a ska-punk group of sorts. I mean, they're like pop punk that has been mildly infused with a bit of hardcore, which was then carefully blended with a bit of ska music...and after all of that chemistry the world was left with WATU. They have two full lengths out there in the world, and both of them are pretty awesome. 'Who We Are' was this awesome as fuck, heavy with pop punk record with some of the catchiest songs ever to be written, and 'Great Leaps Forward' was some of the coolest shit I've ever heard done with any of the involved genres, and none of their trademark catchiness was lost in the process.
'Graveyard Grins' kicks off with a typical sounding WATU song. "If I Can't Smoke or Swear I'm Fucked" seems very much like WATU song title (or a Latterman song title...which is saying the same thing, pretty much) and it's definitely in their usual style. It's horn heavy, guitar heavy, and full of vocalist Reed Wolcott's awesome lyricism and vocals, which have gotten much better with each release. The only difference here is that they throw a guitar solo in there, which is mixed in so loudly that I'm pretty sure it has been trying very hard for very long to break out over the rest of the instruments. Another thing I'd like to mention is how quiet the trombone is on this record. It's a little ridiculous. That's basically my only problem, though. Because this album is completely awesome.
The rest of the album goes at a much slower pace. "Do What You Love..." is kind of a Lifetime styled song, if Lifetime had some awesome horn lines, and it leads into "...And Fuck the Rest", which is this reggae influenced instrumental ordeal that can only really be described as either weird or interesting. The former song is probably my favorite on the album, and I guess the latter is really just continuing the same song, meaning it's part of my favorite song on the album? I'm not really sure how that works out.
But hey, the album isn't over after these two! They're followed by an awesome cover of "Thank You" by Descendents. To be honest, THIS is my favorite song on the EP. But to be fair, it's just a cover so I can't really make that claim. If you like Descendents and you like WATU, there's zero chance that you won't love this cover. It's done so well, and there's horns! It's a pretty awesome deal. There's even some sort of 8-bit style shit after the song ends. Rad.
This album is definitely worth the four dollars that Paper + Plastick is charging for it, so don't miss out on this release. I mean, unless it turns out that the three originals songs are going to be on the upcoming full length. If that's the case, then it's not worth the four dollars, but it is worth at least a dollar for that awesome Descendents cover. So yeah, you should just go ahead and buy it. Because you're a good person and probably have been waiting ages for some new material from the WATUniverse. The wait is over.