An awesome Sophmore project from the boys of West Sacramento. Now and Forever blows their premiere release out of the water in everyway, production, song writing, lyrics, and musicianship and vocal display. This CD is better in every possible way, one of my favorite punk albums to date.
The album is a mix of fast paced pop punk mixed with elements of hardcore and emo and even a special acoustic track. It is obvious the ammount of maturing taking place in all the members. Rather than being satisfied as your average run of the mill punk, Anthony says While It’s all punk there are a lot of sub-genre’s that we’ve touched on the album. We tried to step it up a notch (you know like Emeril)… I personally worked my butt off on writing actual melodies” . And they show Track 2 “Given So Freely” is a strong example. Intense aggressive and beautiful. Then you have those tracks that reach out of your speakers grab your face and throw it on the ground. That track is entitled Prelude (pronounce pree-lude). For those of you who have their their split with the Hanover Saints this is much like their track “untitled” which is a 45 second hardcore punk experience. Prelude is more of a 2:12 rock your face off fest. The bridge is also a wonderful suprise (think Freddie Mercury). Hopefully you can figure that one out. Another great intense track is entitled “Waving Goodbye” is a song about pain and how we search out it out in all the wrong places. It almost have a similar feel to a Psalm. Talking to God and expression frustration and anger ulimately realizing that true happiness can only be found in God the line “Faithless Faceles I turn to you can you see me waving?” says it all. “Playing for Keeps” is their made for radio song. It is not what most Shop fans are used to and that is what they were going for a radio friendly song that could pull some people in. The CD ends with a track recorded live on 98 rock a local secular radio station. It is a rare live acoustic performance by the band done very well might I say.
This CD is awesome totally worth the dirt cheap price they sell it for if you happen to see them on tour go out and see them! My review cannot do them justice according to Anthony bands like “Stretch Arm Strong at first and of course NoFx… umm… Sublime The Police Pennywise Lagwagon Anguish Unsaid The Offspring Green Day” influenced his part of this awesome EP.