Review Summary: It's never easy to understand why memories hold our hand but people let go.
The year was 2002. While we were at war with Afghanistan and the US department of Justice was investigating Enron I was just a sophomore in High Schools and "Hard Rock Bottom" was blaring through my speakers all summer long. It's hard to remember that far back, it really is. All I know is bands like NUFAN, The Ataris, Blink-182 and the Starting Line helped shape some of the best years of my life.
The album starts off great with "Feels Like Home", a minute-long ballad of sorts. This song contains some of the albums best lyrics as Tony Sly states "It's never easy to understand why memories hold our hand but people let go." Honestly I can't think of a better way to start the album. This is followed by the up-beat songs "International You Day" and Dumb Reminders." Luckily the band is able to keep the momentum going throughout the album and ends with "Nailed Shut", a catchy as hell tune and an excellent way to close the album.
Many pop-punk bands are plagued with having all their songs sound the same. Although "Hard rock Bottom does have some similar song structures the band throws some curve balls with songs like "This is a Rebel Song" which sounds like something that could have been written by The Dropkick Murphy's or Flogging Molly. "Pre-Medicated Murder" also stands out as different as it begins with a violin before exploding into another fast paced song.
I could go on and on about each song but I think I've said enough. Hard Rock Bottom is catchy, consistent, and has enough variety to increase the longevity of the album. While the lyrics aren't amazing they are definitely better than your average pop punk band. Although this album is very nostalgic for me I still think it's a great collection of songs today. If you are a fan of NUFAN or Tony Sly's solo material and you haven't heard this I highly recommend picking this up. You won't regret it.