Reviews Bad Sports Kings Of The Weekend

Bad Sports

Kings Of The Weekend

Bad Sports made a smart sequencing decision by opening Kings of the Weekend with “Off Switch.” The punk burner has a lot of garage noise and it rips past in just 1:47. Why is it a smart opener, you ask? Well, from the brick wall band photo to the band’s posture to numerous tracks on the record, this Denton, TX three-piece likes The Ramones. And that’s not a bad thing. However, by opening with a song that doesn’t wear the influence on its sleeve, it creates additional distinction that helps set the tone of the record. If they’d opened with “Can’t Just Be Friends” or “Sweet Sweet Mandy,” it would be easy to dismiss them without a fair shake.

Don’t let that first paragraph sway you too far though. While a few of the songs fit in the Ramones playbook, others offer a wider influence, building from a foundation of 60s garage and complementing with tight structures. “Teenage Girls” owes much more to 60s group harmonies and “Inside Out” has a touch of bubblegum to it. If a one sentence description is truly sought: think Ramones plus 60s garage, with more distortion and occasional sloppiness to complement the tight harmonies and choruses. In subgenreland, I call this garage-punk. At times, they kick a bit more swagger into the songs, as in “Days of Denton.” The record, their second full length, is recorded by Mark Ryan (Marked Men, Mind Spiders, High Tension Wires) and his pop sensibility lends itself to the song structures by maximizing the melody without detracting from the raw energy.

While all of these adjectives are well worn rock descriptors, Bad Sports succeeds in combining these elements: Kings of the Weekend sounds like Bad Sports, not like the Ramones or Marked Men or whomever. They pull off their own consistent sound, schooled in the basics but making it their own. Fans of any of the aforementioned bands should take note, but don’t expect a knockoff. It’s equal parts rough-around-the-edges rawk and singalong harmony. The tightrope balance in between is the band’s strong suit.

7.2 / 10Loren
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Dirtnap

2011

7.2 / 10

7.2 / 10

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