US pop punks Static Fiction have been compared to Green Day most consistently since, well emerging in 2011 really. For us maybe Nerf Herder would be an even closer reference but it has to be said that there are certain moments within new EP/mini album All In, that you cannot help imagining that if The Beach Boys were breaking now with a punk inspired sound, they would not be too far apart from this Californian quartet.
Their six track romp is a thoroughly captivating encounter, with half its songs impressive and the other offerings irresistible adventures of sound and enterprise. Influences to the band include indeed Green Day alongside the likes of Weezer, NoFx, Bouncing Souls, Bowling For Soup, Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, and…well the list is long and it is fair to say that many are openly worn on the sleeves of songs. What sets the band apart from the current pop punk crowd though is an additional power pop tenacity and a flood of hooks which are simply fresh and uniquely imaginative. All In still feels like it had more to give but could not quite realise all of its promise, though in turn it rigorously hints that there is the potential for a killer album from Static Fiction in the future.
The Huntington Beach band released their very well-received debut self-titled EP at the very end of 2012, a proposition recorded with award winning producer/engineer Ryan Greene. The band were determined to enlist the man’s services, hitting up a Authority Zero gig in Arizona and pleading with that band’s lead singer for Greene’s number. It led to a link up which has been repeated with All In, a release which is a thick thrilling leap on from its predecessor. The time between releases has seen a change in the Static Fiction line-up too, another fresh and potent element we would suggest helping make All In one unforgettable tempting.
The release opens up with Main Street and straight away hits ears with feisty rhythms and excited riffs, both entwined with swiftly gripping hooks and flavoursome melodies. The vocals of guitarist Paul Lapinsky are just as impacting from the off, welcoming backing contributions across the band and song to similar success. The more grizzled bassline of Ryan Brown is another spicy lure but then again everything from the thumping beats of drummer Derek Goodwin to the smiling enterprise of guitarists Noah Dunbar and Lapinsky just colludes in an incendiary endeavour of fun. There are also little twists and creative additives vocally and musically which provide shards of unpredictability to the encounter and shows that the Static Fiction songwriting is just as boisterous and eventful as their sound.
The strong start is instantly matched by the following Keep It Moving. Arguably less unique than the opener, the bright stroll and energetic swagger of the song is still a magnetic and infectious proposition with its addictive chorus especially enslaving. There is a touch of Blink 182 meets Face to Face to the track which does it no harm at all, though it and indeed the previous track have to bow down to the exceptional Temporary which comes next. It is pure addiction, a cage of hooks and mischievous enterprise impossible to escape brought with a simply contagious creative grin. A sonic lure richly teases first before the song slips into a virulent amble of vocal enticing and infection clad hooks from across the whole line-up. The bass has a steely lure and beats a dramatic intent whilst the guitars just roll out a stream of temptation and incitement. Even the mellow caress of harmonies and melodies for the chorus has a certain unpredictable glint to its persuasion, though it is the bold and punchy ingenuity with a whisper of Billy Talent creativity to it, which particularly ignites ears and imagination.
Something Amazing is soon doing its best to match the pinnacle of the release and with its summery warmth and vivacious stride is not far from hitting a similar mark in the passions. With flowing harmonies and evocative melodies against a sturdier rhythmic shuffle, that Beach Boys essence is most vocal here, though as anything suggested it is just another colour in the overall blend of rich flavours and textures within tracks. There is little chance of not finding feet agitated or indeed bodies leaping around to the song either, a persuasion emulated in the following Amra and its insistently catchy and energetic tale of The Graduate like attraction.
All In closes with Till the End, an acoustic proposal seeing Lapinsky and guitar alone in reflection. It is a very enjoyable track and is definitely placed in the right position on the release but just is a little bit of an anti-climax after the creative rioting before it, leaving that dulled feeling felt just after the party has ended and peace descends.
It is fair to say that we have not enjoyed a pop punk offering more in recent times and the fact that it also infers that there is definite potential for even greater exploits ahead with Static Fiction, it is exciting times….
All In is available now via most online stores.
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