OK, so technically this album came out in March. But honestly, if I can’t break the rules every now and then what’s the point of this whole thing?
This album is fantastic, whether you were listening to it last month or just hearing about it now.
When I was a wide-eyed freshman back at Western Washington University, I had some punk friends. I even went to a house show in a dingy concrete basement where most people wore black and some of the guys even wore eyeliner.
I was not punk. I’m still not punk. But back then? I was listening to The Shins and Brandi Carlile and a lot of really dreamy indie music, not the kind of stuff where you stand in a basement and scream and thrash around to distorted guitar.
Enough about me, let’s talk about Sorority Noise. This is their third album, following “Joy, Departed” (2015) and “Forgettable” (2014). They’ve found quite a bit of success over those few years, and in fact Alternative Press named Sorority Noise one of 100 Bands You Need to Know in 2015.
If, like me, you’re just starting to explore punk music, these guys are a good place to start. They’re pop-punk, so they’re more accessible than, say, PUP — a little more melodic, a little less … shouty.
In fact, a few tracks on “You’re Not As ___ As You Think” are almost calm. “First Letter for St. Sean,” a song about the death of a friend, is slow and somber, the vocals occasionally barely audible. “Second Letter from St. Julien” is very similar, though it builds into something more aggressive near the end.
Other songs are pretty unapologetically loud. “Disappeared,” for instance, or “No Halo.” But it’s “A Portrait Of” that’s easily my favorite song of the album. When I listen to it I can almost picture myself back in that dark basement in Bellingham — the lead singer pressed up into the microphone, a crowd of strangers jumping along to the guitar and sweat dripping out of the drummer’s hair.