Review Summary: Welcome back to 1999!!
It’s only appropriate that after ten years and five albums later we can revisit this release with slight admiration. The aspect of youth found on this release, while a little sappy and overplayed, certainly makes a lasting impact that brings out the sixteen year old in the common listener. Now, whether or not that is taken with glee or grief certainly depends on the individual, but there’s definitely something to be said about those of us who have gone through the years and have found ourselves reaching back to aged classics that helped identify the memories of our youth. New Found Glory created a niche for themselves in a scene where they are bound by songs of love loss and bubble gum antiques for riffs and rhythms. At the time of its release the album found itself amongst peers of less ambitious intentions and certainly plagued the sounds of the self titled. It is now the time to brush the dust off this release and place it back in the limelight in which it belongs after a decade’s worth of nostalgia.
New Found Glory certainly haven’t paved the way for technical enthusiasts to drool over their musical intricacies, but they sure do know how to compose a positive tune with an upbeat demeanor that will guide their lyrical themes into fruition. Cyrus Balooki, although mediocre at best, carries his fair share of the weight on the drums and launches a convincing performance much alike the one Travis Barker was so highly regarded for on Enema of the State. Knowing where to hit the additional snare pop, or even throwing in the occasional floor tom drop seems to pave a smooth road for the rhythm section of this release.
Both guitars, although rounded off by a buzzsaw production, seem to be tuned just right for them to be able to maintain the melody alongside Jordan’s nasally vocal demeanor. However, it is the bass that seems to stay in the spotlight in this release as tracks like the melancholy “Sincerely Me” or the sugar-coated “Vegas” are solidified by Ian Grushka’s punk-meets-weak-ska-best-attempts approach to the low end. Certainly all strings on this album are very sharp and create a positive atmosphere for the vocals, which all revolve around relationship-turned-sour lyrics.
Personally, I find the lyrical content to be entertaining. Clearly, hearing about the shortcomings of the opposite sex and how everything fell apart might not be everyone’s cup of tea. Coming from a hardcore background, this theme has been a reoccurring motif for as long as I can remember. Bury your Dead did just fine with Cover Your Tracks and didn’t stray from the formula and even though the sappy emotional poetry is a bit much sometimes (check “Dressed To Kill” and the extreme “Boy Crazy” for reference) it still fits the tunes just right.
However the album is extremely accessible and it’s safe to say it begins by kicking off in a quick pace, launching into “Better Off Dead,” a tune that has proven to be a classic opener. Although Jordan’s voice is at an all time squeaky peak, the groove of the track is certainly one to acknowledge as a worthy starter. From here everything follows suit and the album closes with a solid omen to good times and good memories. Although not for everybody, New Found Glory have managed to establish a unique sound with pretty anthems and positive outlooks.