Team Stray

Gender Studies

Written by: PP on 28/07/2008 10:35:00

With one foot in punk revival, another in old school Green Day imitation, and a third in modern day pop punk, Team Stray\'s sophomore full length \"Gender Studies\" seems to have three legs in total. Maybe that\'s why they stick out like a sore thumb from the meaningless gray cloud of pop punk bands these days. Because for all the many waves of pop punk acts (I\'ve already lost count how many waves there are since Green Day\'s debut) there have been, how many bands are you able to name drop that sound even remotely like Green Day\'s mid 90s stuff, despite the all too big temptation of calling their songs some of the simplest music recorded in the last two decades? That\'s right, I didn\'t think so either, which leads me to conclude that either writing unfathomably catchy, relaxed punk rock is much more difficult to write than most people think, or that for some reason people just think Green Day is too cool of a band to rip off from (that is, before \"American Idiot\").

Not that Team Stray are exactly ripping off \"1039 Smoothed Out Slappy Hours\" or \"Dookie\" on \"Gender Studies\". They simply belong to the same wave of bands (over fifteen years later), with a pinch of Ramones / The Clash influence in their buzzing guitars and worry free two minute songs. They are silly at times, singing about sexual relations with past girlfriends (\"Gender Studies\"), or tongue-in-cheek about serious subjects as on \"Mezzanine\", where the band explores job interviews. And it\'s damn catchy, too, especially with the alternating male/female vocals in the song.

The reason Team Stray sound so awesomely fresh on \"Gender Studies\" is that although they are referencing major bands from the last three decades, they leave the last eight or so years largely untouched, allowing their brand of 1st wave pop punk/punk rock revival to flourish. There\'s just something so damn enjoyable about songs which possess no more than three or four chords overall, and completely lack the overly dramatic vocal delivery that so many other bands profess these days. You\'re lying if you will tell me you never enjoyed songs like \"Welcome To Paradise\" or \"When I Come Around\", so you have basically no excuse for not checking out Team Stray and \"Gender Studies\", for they are bringing the early 90s pop punk back with all three legs.

8

Download: Gender Studies, Mezzanine, Dying Young
For the fans of: Green Day, The Clash, Ramones
Listen: Myspace

Release date 20.06.2008
Cold Feet Records

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