Gameday Regulars

... But It's Hell In The Hallway

Written by: TL on 09/03/2012 14:27:55

You know how listening to Living With Lions feels like listening to some of your bros having been in the drink all evening, turning their heartaches into anger and then shouting at the moon about it (rough pop-punk playing in the background)? If that's what they sound like, then "Pale Reflections" - the first song on the debut EP "... But It's Hell In The Hallway" by New York sports fans Gameday Regulars - sounds like those same bros, several hours, beers and whiskey shots later, doing approximately the same thing in the early hours of the morning, except in an even rougher and rowdier manner.

That's the first thought that took shape in my mind while listening to "... But It's Hell In The Hallway", but admittedly, I soon had to revise my thinking and recognise that the rough-yet-melodic, slurred, manly pop-punk delivered here, does sound quite a bit closer to fellow east coast punkers The Welch Boys and Street Dogs, whose alco-anthems "Drinking Angry" and "Tobe's Got A Drinking Problem" come to mind almost instantly when listening to a song like the awesomely titled "The Whiskey Keeps Us Young".

Now, as you can probably figure out reading those references, Gameday Regulars aren't out to make punk-rock into rocket science, and the six songs on "... Hallway" do initially seem to follow a fairly straight-forward melodic riff+shoutalong chorus formula, and this I think works against them on middle tracks "Heavy Bikes" and "Smoke Jumpers", which get a little too one-two-three-Ramones for my taste. Fortunately it does not take much more than slight improvements to the rhythm section and the dynamics in general before a song like "Devil's Coffee" picks things up and primes the listener for a solid finish in the aforementioned "The Whiskey Keeps Us Young", which predictably features a chorus that anybody should be happy to yell at the backend of a decent binge.

The most interesting song on the record however, might just be track two, "Hearts And Bones", which starts out much more anthemic with - is that strings? an organ? bagpibes? - underscoring the intro riff, and proceeds with a tempo and chord progression that's a little more sentimental. It's a welcome dose of nuances on an EP that otherwise presents Gameday Regulars as a solid, enjoyable punk-rock trio, that deserves to be met with raised fists and passionate shoutalongs wherever they play. As that, I think they sound good enough to put out multiple records deserving of about 7 and earning a solid following, but I also think that "Hearts And Bones" show that there might be potential for something a little more interesting. I guess we just have to wait and see if that gets explored on future material.


Download: Hearts And Bones, Devil's Coffee, Pale Reflections, The Whiskey Keeps Us Young
For The Fans Of: The Welch Boys, Street Dogs, Teenage Bottlerocket

Release Date 27.09.2011
Mightier Than Sword Records

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