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7 out of 10
Middlesex’s 8th Time Luckie are clearly devoted pop-punk fans. Their latest EP exhibits an array of influences from the world of modern pop-punk, they’ve certainly been to the Fall Out Boy school of song titles, ’Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right (but they do make us even)’ being a particular favourite. Their sound flits seamlessly from the more melodic stylings of ’Coming Home’ era New Found Glory to a more straightforward pop-punk reminiscent of Fall Out Boy’s ’Take This To Your Grave’. Tracks like ’Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right’ and the excellent ’Living Ain’t Living...’ bounce along with youthful exuberance, think early Blink 182 with more mature lyrics, and set a high precedent for the rest of the album, one that is thankfully maintained.
There is a tendency for English pop-punk bands to try to sing in an American style, fortunately this issue is side-stepped by vocalist James Palmer who sounds satisfyingly English, if borderline morose on closer ’Paper Notes’. It is this and ’The Other Side of Nothing/We Are’ that lends the album something different and ably demonstrates 8th Time Luckie’s versatility, the former with a delicious acoustic intro before breaking into an sprawling ballad and the latter with its soaring, epic chorus reminiscent of Snow Patrol.
Overall this is a really good pop punk album, it doesn’t fall into the trap of striving for the perfect bouncy anthem, rather it showcases different sides of the genre suggesting that 8th Time Luckie have longevity and an adaptable sound that many more established acts would kill for.
2. Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right (but they do make us even)
3. Living Ain’t Living (unless you’re dying)
4. Diligent at Being a Disaster
6. The Other Side of Nothing/We Are
7. Paper Notes