A solid debut that more than makes up for the misses with the hits.
Label: Easy Life
Released: November 4th 2016
Having released their debut EP ‘Cluster’ back in May, Texas trio Waterparks have gone full steam ahead with their first full length, ‘Double Dare’. There are hints of everything from the shadow of Good Charlotte (the Madden brothers manage the band) to thesweet tact of Owl City. It makes for an over-the-top but fun nonetheless listen.
Opener ‘Hawaii (Stay Awake)’ immediately presents the band as hyper-pop punk, but within there lies a lot more than just easily digestible summer anthems. Obviously there songs that relate to modern romance, such as the throwaway attitude that causes teen angst (’21 Questions’), but there’s also a deeper side. Taking on the cultural effects of being American with the aptly titled ‘Made in America’, there’s a social exuberance that can only be put forward by a young band such as Waterparks – they’re aware of who they are and where they come from.
Even taking on the state of the music industry in ‘Little Violence’ – a furious and snotty punk track with lyrics that concern the promotional aspect of being in a band. “Maybe if we’re lucky we’ll get a review, if that goes well a feature too,” they jibe. The crossover toward electronica comes heavily into play at times too, especially on ‘Take Her To The Moon’ which uses pulsating beats that swirl and launch up only to come crashing into a pop punk chorus rather than an EDM drop. It’s a little too heavy in execution, a clear take on a club hit which careers wildly away from the majority of the album.
‘Double Dare’ is a solid debut that more than makes up for the misses with the hits. What the band do best, angst driven punk with minor electronic elements, is what should be focused on. Now let’s see what we can do about that feature… Steven Loftin