Music Review: Saves The Day

The new album by Saves The Day might be the most fun record I’ve heard all year.

Saves The Day

On their new self-titled album, the New Jersey band brings wave after wave of infectious pop punk. On first play it’s all sunny and sweet, but repeated listens reveal honest lyrics about lost-and-found love and run-ins with racist drunks (see: “Xenophobic Blind Left Hook”).

It’s all over in just over 30 minutes, but Saves The Day pack a lot into these 11 tracks. It’s not easy to write a three-minute song that actually feels complete–with a few verses, chorus and bridge–but these boys seem to pull it off effortlessly. There’s not a dud on the record and when it’s over you want to play it again.

I hadn’t seen it before, but singer/songwriter Chris Conley reminds me a lot of John K. Samson from Canadian indie darling, The Weakerthans.  Both Conley and Samson come from a punk background, and yet both stand apart from others in the genre with clever, observational lyrics that fit big literary words around instantly catchy hooks.

As someone who first heard this band in high school (back in the early 2000s), it’s very cool to see Conley has matured so much as a songwriter. Saves The Day isn’t writing exactly the same kind of songs they used to, but they have harvested the best elements.

Some other reviewers on the Web say that Saves The Day have overdone the cheerfulness on this one, but to them I say, “Lighten up!”

It’s refreshing to hear music with such positive energy. It’s not a concept album. There’s no political agenda or “screw you” to the mainstream. It’s just a bunch of guys having fun and hoping their fans will come along for the ride.

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