Punk Goes Pop Vol. 7 Review
Punk Goes Pop Vol. 7 is the latest in Fearless Records’ Punk Goes… compilation series, featuring rock bands covering mainstream pop hits.
With over 2.5 million albums & 10 million singles sold, featuring bands such as A Day To Remember, The All-American Rejects, Rise Against, Pierce The Veil, All Time Low, PVRIS, Sleeping With Sirens, Asking Alexandria, Taking Back Sunday, Thrice and more, Punk Goes… series have already shaken up the whole punk world. And once again Punk Goes Pop Vol. 7 is set to release another dose of masterfully re-done pop hits, brought to life by all your favourites.
Opening with State Champs and their version of Shawn Mendes’ Stitches, the record injects a dynamic spark revitalising the punk rock spirit. The Albany, NY five-piece bears a hard-edged tinge, creating the soundscape that transforms a regular pop song into a fast-paced melody that simply punches you in the face with a strong affection. Brilliant and surprising, the track sets the bar high from the very beginning, but that just State Champs doing what they do best.
Dance Gavin Dance‘s signature melodic twists and screamo lines come up next, shining bright on Bruno Mars’ That’s What I Like. Perhaps, a tad out of place when aligned with plain lyricism but truly varied, the band makes the song worth another listen. The same goes for The Amity Affliction as they spread some magic on The Weeknd’s Can’t Feel My Face. More guitar-driven, less boring, the tune seems to be re-living its grand success. Both alongside Ice Nine Kills and their sharp take on I Don’t Wanna Live Forever by ZAYN and Taylor Swift make a solid contenders to be the most stand-out track on the record.
They certainly went bold for all the biggest hits on the Vol. 7. Adele’s piano ballad When We Were Young, enhanced by co-vocal play of Andy Black and Juliet Simms, remains a true masterpiece. With emotive tonality led by male vocals, it is an interesting and challenging take but these two do just fine.
Next we’ve got Grayscale and their rendition of Justin Bieber’s Love Yourself. The track that’s been covered thousand times already I assume, may carry higher expectations but the world really needs this particular portrayal. The hard-hitting chorus adds in a true punk flare, shaping an impression that this has always been an original version.
However, another one taken from the top shelf, Shape Of You by Ed Sheeran, falls completely flat compering to the other offerings that landed on the compilation. Eat Your Heart Out spray female vocals on the rhythmic sensation but lack any emotional charge or value. I’ve never been a huge fan of Ed and this cover surely won’t make me want to listen to his music any time soon. Sadly, The Plot In You don’t bring anything new to James Bay’s Let It Go either, sounding quite similar to the original.
On the other hand, an absolute brilliance is hailing from Heathens by Twenty One Pilots as Boston Manor revamp it slightly (not that the track has ever needed that of course). The young punk rockers have already been winning hearts across the globe, proving their broad potential. Having appeared on this record will only strengthen their position on the current music scene. Subtle on the verse, powerful on the chorus, Boston Manor play with the chords, masterfully taking control over the dark melody. Sorry Twenty One Pilots, but it looks like a strong competition has just arisen.
As we approach the ending, Seaway gracefully manage the electro-pop hit, Closer (feat. Halsey) by The Chainsmokers. Melodic dual vocal layers are their strength, so they use it on this occasion as well. It’s a pleasant summery tune and even with a guitar-laden soundscape, it remains one.
Punk Goes… series have always aimed for doing something different and surprising at the same time. With a few average moments but quite a thrilling plethora of upcoming acts, Punk Goes Pop Vol. 7 will make you believe that perhaps pop music’s final destination is to land on the Fearless Records’ compilations. Give punk music a chance to amaze you.