The Get Up Kids - There Are Rules
Legendary emo band The Get Up Kids return in true DIY fashion: for their fifth release and first in seven years, "There Are Rules" comes curtesy of their own label, the newly created Quality Hill. KC's passionate ones are back with a slightly schizophrenic but noisy and fun record, one that owes both 90s power pop and 80s electronic music big time.
The record is essentially split between five pulsating techno tracks and five rockers, with two songs more or less blending the two styles, and doing it with power. Of the big beat tracks, "shatter Your Lungs" is the highlight; "Automatic" and "Pararelevant" both go on too long, and they are only 2 minutes plus; they ramble on but never hit a satisfying groove. On the flip side, "When It Dies" and "Better Lie" particularly rock.
It is only on "Regent's Court" and the last song, "Rememorable," where styles merge, and an urgent electronic beat supports an equally passionate guitar progression. Here, guitarists Matthew Pryor and Jim Suptic, along with keyboardist James Dewees vie for honors they chase separately throughout the set. Drummer Ryan Pope seems lost in the mix most of the time; putting him out front would have given these songs even more punch.
Are we happy to have The Get Up Kids back? Hard to tell, since there is sadly too much to attract our attention to where we miss even the good stuff. With "There Are Rules," the Kids return to give more of their good, solid brand of passionate, melodic music. Welcome back, guys, hope a lot of people will pay attention.
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