Yellowcard
Southern Air


4.5
superb

Review

by DropTune USER (65 Reviews)
June 6th, 2018 | 16 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Headed fast for the unknown.

By 2012, pop-punk’s massive decline was hard to ignore. Mainstays like Green Day, Blink-182, and Fall Out Boy moved on leaving the scene with a gaping hole. Sum-41 was forgotten while Paramore was phasing themselves out. It was hard to watch pop-punk bleed out before my very eyes. As fate would have it, Warped Tour would meet a similar fate 6 years later. The eternal summertime of pop-punk met winter for the first time, but the frigid wind was melted by Summer Air, the salty sweet release from Yellowcard. It’s almost unfair how little of a reception the album received for obvious reasons. While no one was looking, Yellowcard dropped one of their best releases. Filled with energy, optimism, and hope, Southern Air was just what listeners needed at the time.

“Bottoms up tonight/I drink to you and I/Cause with the morning comes the rest of my life,” sings Ryan Key as Yellowcard flourishes with ‘Awakening.’ As the dawn breaks, we spend the day with Yellowcard as we power through the crisp Southern coast with the wind in our sails and cares to the wind. Southern Air tackles the maturity of the band as they look to their past to tailor their future. ‘Surface of the Sun’ goes more in-depth as the band recalls the highs and lows of their career and what it means to move on. “And getting up when we're dragged down is all we've known,” Ryan Key blares as the guitars chug a one-two punch and drums kick in the background. Tay Jardine jumps in for a spell as ‘Here I Am Alive’ introduces the lighter side of the album. ‘Here I Am Alive’ swings with a muted guitar, pop-rock beat, and sweet tone as Key and Jardine reflect on the judgement they face and desire to learn from their mistakes.

“Let's go where we belong/Headed fast as we can for the unknown,” blares Key’s bright voice as Yellowcard tears it up in ‘Telescope,’ one of the many gems in Southern Air. Night falls on Southern Air as Ryan Key remembers his lost child. “How it would have felt to hold you/Would you have my eyes,” he asks, as the song chugs forth. “I never got to meet you, my best friend,” he says, “You would be watching Star Wars with your PJs on.” Truly the most tragic number in Yellowcard’s discography, ‘Ten’ leaves a lasting impression after the first listen. The self-titled closer lifts our spirits with a passionate rocker about making your way home. Feeling the salt on your skin, ocean against your ears, and sea breeze through your hair is worth the pain and heartache that leads you home. ‘Southern Air’ features one of the albums best breakdowns during the bridge.

I often wonder how listeners remember American Idiot and Enema of the State, but Southern Air fails to make the ranks. One of the most colorful and innovative pop-punk albums of all time was subject to bad timing. As pop-punk was at its lowest, Southern Air screamed while no one was there to hear. The effort never paid its due, and tragically, never will. As albums like Riot and From Under the Cork Tree reached legend status, it wasn’t until 2016 Yellowcard came close. Pop-punk never aged well, which explains how immature it is. The genre defined by silliness and youthful optimism never grew up, but surely grew old. Southern Air paints a realistic picture of how fame and fortune never last and the only way to live is to move on. It's almost foreshadowing what happened four years later.

Standout Tracks
River Town Blues (amazing drums)
Ten
Southern Air
Telescope



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Gyromania
June 6th 2018


27170 Comments


Surprised Sowing hasn't shown up yet... I thought he got push notifications sent to him any time someone commented on or posted a Yellowcard review.

Feather
June 6th 2018


5147 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

inb4 sowing

Gyromania
June 6th 2018


27170 Comments


Okay I'm seriously starting to worry here that something terrible has happened to him... Normally he'd be here long before now

SowingSeason
Moderator
June 6th 2018


30688 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Sorry guys, I was listening to Yellowcard and forgot to refresh ;-)

Digging: Tyler, the Creator - Igor

Gyromania
June 6th 2018


27170 Comments


Man, don't scare me like that!

SowingSeason
Moderator
June 6th 2018


30688 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Review is good. A few tiny awkward phrasings (that Hmm mmm mmm thing, also the last sentence seems clunky and I don't know what it's actually saying), but the vast majority of this is well-written and accurately summarizes the record. "Salty sweet" is the perfect descriptor (for this and most other YC releases). If you haven't checked it, get on their cover of 'Fix You', which came as a b-side on this (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWo3CMUp8K0). It's one of my favorite songs by them even though it's just a cover.



DropTune
June 6th 2018


1292 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Thanks for the tips Sowing. I went ahead and edited those out. They sounded good at the time, but after rereading, I saw the issues as well. I'm not a fan of Coldplay, but 'Fix You' is a pretty good track. I don't find it as fulfilling for that reason, but it's another one of Yellowcard's hidden gems.

SowingSeason
Moderator
June 6th 2018


30688 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

I like that you touched on the lyrics of Ten. It's such a misunderstood track and I remember everyone writing it off immediately in 2012. It's got a pretty substantial topic.

Lucman
June 6th 2018


2533 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Ah, super review, man! Perfect album. Have a pos!

Digging: Shiina Ringo - Shouso Strip

SowingSeason
Moderator
June 7th 2018


30688 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Ah yeah I knew I forgot to do something!

joshieboy
June 7th 2018


6550 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Great album. Always thought A Vicious Kind was in a top 10 of their best ever songs.

SowingSeason
Moderator
June 7th 2018


30688 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

That's the thing about this album. Most of the songs you don't ever think about or remember from here are still tremendous. I feel the same way about Telescope and Sleep in the Snow.

DropTune
June 7th 2018


1292 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The entire album is a banger. There isn't a dull moment. 'Telescope' has that big song feel to it, especially during the chorus. It's like a Yellowcard explosion.

joshieboy
June 7th 2018


6550 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Agreed hard that Rivertown Blues has some awesome drumming. We always knew Longineu was a solid drummer though.

SowingSeason
Moderator
June 7th 2018


30688 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Band kind of fell apart without him, as much as I hate to admit it. Lift a Sail lacked energy and even at the S/T's most energetic, the percussion lacked the smooth flow that you hear on this album.

DropTune
June 7th 2018


1292 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

To s/t's credit it was more mellow in comparison.



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