There’s something special about Broadway Calls, while most other bands within their genre are more concerned about scoring a Glamour Kills sponsorship, these three natives from Oregon keep it real with their stripped-down and gimmick-free pop-punk – yes, pop-punk that still maintains an essence of punk. Their second full-length and first release on Side One Dummy Records, Good Views, Bad News is jam-packed with 11 punchy pop-punk gems.
Ty Vaughn’s distinctively bratty, yet obnoxious-free, lead vocals are on top form and, this time round, are frequently aided and complimented well with bassist Matt Koenig’s raspy vocals. Instrumentally, the band are a lot tighter and catchier than ever, later leaving you humming their guitar riffs – not to mention, Josh Baird’s fantastic raucous drumming throughout.
The trio show off their diversity with a variety of styles on this record, as opening track Midnight Hour straight-up smacks you in the face with its undeniable energy, while finishing with the slow-paced At The End, demonstrating the band’s heart-warming sincerity.
There is no doubt about it that Good News, Bad Views is rife with anthems featuring euphoric gang vocals aplenty, demonstrated in the fist-pumping and standout tracks of Basement Royalty and To The Sheets, the latter of which could have easily been the album closer, ending with the simple yet effective chant of “I’m just a kid/with a song in my head/with your face in my heart/what could be better than this?” Meanwhile, the politically-fuelled Election Night exhibits the band’s lyrical depth as they delve into more serious matters without sounding too forceful with their views, particularly with it being coated in contagious melodies.
Overall, this is a really accessible record, with all the hooks and ‘woaaahs’ you could possibly want for a good sing-a-long and while the production of this record is more polished than their self-titled, thanks to producers Bill Stevenson (Descendents drummer) and Jason Livermore, there is still an old school charm and ethic that separates Broadway Calls from today’s class of bog-standard, uninspiring and, quite frankly, poncey ‘pop-punk’, as they actually have substance and grit, musically and lyrically.
Ever since their debut EP, Call The Medic, released in 2005, Broadway Calls have been one of music’s best kept secrets, but with Good Views, Bad News, this should be about to change, and if this doesn’t propel them into spotlight and give them the recognition that they so righteously deserve, I don’t really know what can, as they have easily produced the best album of 2009.
Good Views, Bad News by Broadway Calls is out now on Side One Dummy Records, you can listen to the record in full HERE.