They’re a band who have commendably tried to mix up the pop-punk playbook with genre hopping aplenty, something which made debut album ‘Brighter’ a fun and varied listen. If one that was rather tricky to pin down. Now they’re back with new EP ‘Armageddon’, which is their first release for Rude Records, and sees them thankfully focus and consolidate their sound. This time around the five piece have settled for an electro heavy take on pop-punk that also features plenty of generous helpings of a bright and airy ‘Do Wop’ vibe.
Things kick off brightly with the pounding drums and grooving bass of ‘Too Much To Think’ that breaks out into a big moog driven chorus featuring big dollops of gang vocal harmonies and a list of UK cities being name dropped along the way.
‘Tick Tick Boom’ continues in much the same way, only with the welcome addition of crunchy powerchords and a much hookier chorus, and again the gang harmonies are excellent. This leads into the super, super catchy ‘The Way I See It’ that sees the Do Wop side of the sound come to the fore to great effect joined by jaunty uptempo acoustic guitars in the verses before cranking up into a driving pop-punk chorus.
The title of previous release ‘Brighter’ gets a revisit, a track that’s all marching band drums, mainstream pop vocals and production and self-help book level positivity, before the EP draws to a close with its strongest track. ‘Lets Get Weird’ feels like a power nerd outsider anthem in the making that’s hooky as hell, drops some seriously entertaining pop-culture references ranging from Drake, Twitter, Vince Vaughan and some guest vocals from A Jurrasic World Velocaraptor. Oh and the gang vocal chorus and bridge are ruddy massive too. It’s properly brilliant stuff that could brighten even the darkest of moods.
Patent Pending have continued their development as one of the most fun and unique pop-punk prospects around, while adding some much needed consistency and focus to their writing. ‘Armageddon’ is a refreshing and highly entertaining blast that breaks from the excessive angst or faux-posi of the current US pop-punk scene like a breath of fresh air. Much more of this please.
‘Armageddon’ by Patent Pending is out on now on Rude Records.
Words by Dane Wright (@MrDaneWright)