Reviews Civil War Rust Help Wanted

Civil War Rust

Help Wanted

With Help Wanted, California’s Civil War Rust aren’t inventing any new sounds but they’re delivering heartfelt, direct punk rock in a familiar and comforting tone. It leans more toward the introspective and personal, pop-structured and relatively clean in production while letting the energy and emotion carry the tunes. I made a repeated (early period) Alkaline Trio comparison when I reviewed The Fun and the Lonely, and that influence is still worn on their sleeve with their return, Help Wanted.

The record is 10 songs and 23 minutes, straight forward and to the point. The lyrics, for the most part, explore emotional recovery: finding comfort and motivation amid troubles and break-ups. “You’ve got me upside down and falling apart” is a refrain in “Upside Down” while other lyrical snippets talk of recharging with beaches and beers. Their outlook is pretty well summed up in a later line on the album: “It’s okay to hurt sometimes/ That’s how you know you’re still alive,” which opens the song “Cart Cards and Broken Hearts.”

At other times, it takes a page out of Alk3’s tendency toward melodrama, like the line “I’m followed around by little black clouds/ relieving themselves on my every move” in “Photographs.” While the words sometimes take a dark turn, the harmonies and upbeat tempo present a sunnier picture, like the harsh lyricism of album closer and one of the standout songs, “Revenge Therapy.”

As the lyrics stride down the walkways of urban life in one’s 20s, with some mic hand-offs here and there, the music is also moving forward and driving. It’s fairly predictable and is built around the plentiful hooks and an emphasis on the lyrics.

I’m not sure that Civil War Rust are doing anything new on Help Wanted but I’m not sure that’s always necessary either. The record is a half-hour (ish) of emotional release that alternately bonds over life’s downer moments but brings listener and band together in celebration of conquest before, ultimately, moving on.

7.0 / 10Loren
Advertisement
Radio K 2
Leave a comment

Say-10

2015

7.0 / 10

7.0 / 10

Share this content
Advertisement
Radio K 2
More by Civil War Rust

Civil War Rust

The Fun and the Lonely

7.0 / 10 Civil War Rust - The Fun and the Lonely album cover

In case you’re missing the old Alkaline Trio, the East Bay’s Civil War Rust is calling your name. Not to say the band is strictly derivative of the Matt Skiba-fronted band, ...

Related news

Shows La Escalera Fest 6 tickets available

Posted Jan. 28, 2017, 11:48 a.m.

La Escalera Fest 6 has announced its initial line-up and is selling wristbands for the April 14-16 festival that splits locations between San Diego and Tijuana. Sponsosred by La Escalera ...

MP3s Free digital sampler from Bearded Punk label

Posted Feb. 23, 2016, 11:15 a.m.

Belgian punk  label Bearded Punk is offering a 2016 sampler online for free via bandcamp. The 34 song affair includes the likes of Jeff Rosenstock, Worriers, The Dirty Nil, Timeshares ...

Records 4-way split record from La Escalera, Wiretap, and Def Cow

Posted Oct. 21, 2015, 3:11 p.m.

A new 3-label split has been announced through La Escalera Records, Wiretap Records, and Def Cow Records, plitting the EP between four bands: Success, Western Settings, Civil War Rust, and ...

x

Logo

Looking for the SPB logo? You can download it in a range of styles and colours here:

Click anywhere outside this dialog to close it, or press escape.