Reviews Monikers Wake Up


Wake Up

2008 was a year I kept hearing Monikers' name without knowing a thing about them. They turned up on split releases, message boards, and year end lists before I really familiarized myself with them. It turns out they live up to the endorsements received, not to mention the bonus points received for having an ex-Discount member.

“80 Proof” kicks off Wake Up. It’s a three minute burst of poppy, melodic, and gruff positive energy. The band uses alternating vocals and that bounce the chorus back and forth and gets your leg tapping. Regardless of the generally downer lyrics, the tempo is positive and that’s all I really need. The band mostly sticks to the formula of “80 Proof” throughout, although the alternate vocals aren’t as prevalent on the whole. Lead vocals are handled by Ryan, who has a delivery that’s falls somewhere between Midwest pop punk and Gainesville gruff. The band themselves are from Orlando and have a sound that fits in the No Idea, Art of the Underground, Razorcake family of catchy pop with rough around the edges execution.

Right when I was ready to comment that there are twelve songs with one tempo, the last song, “Black” came on to correct me. Make that eleven songs with a touch of sameness, and then one acoustic track that could’ve been left off the record. It’s an okay closer in the sense that it gets you ready for the record to stop spinning, but it’s only other accomplishment is showing that Ryan doesn’t always have the smokers’ voice. I like his singing style, but it doesn’t have much inflection over the length of the record and this causes a bit of sameness that would hinder Wake Up a lot more if there were any songs that topped three minutes.

When it comes time to pick my favorites, it’s tough to choose, which is a great reflection of the record. “She” offers hooky delivery with some East Bay influence, while “Unemployed” has a catchiness level somewhere between Banner Pilot and The Ergs! The lyrics tend to come from a first person perspective and are, generally, cynical and to the point. “What Doesn’t Kill You” being a good example with its succinct title and lines such as “And yes, I understand that just one beer can solve just about anything…In life there’s no guarantee.”

It may be too late for making 2008 lists, but this record seriously deserves some accolades. The more Florida punk I’m discovering lately, the happier I am.

8.5 / 10Loren
Hot Dog Dayz zine
Leave a comment

8.5 / 10

8.5 / 10

Share this content
Recent reviews

Stone Temple Pilots

Stone Temple Pilots

8.5 / 10 Stone Temple Pilots - Stone Temple Pilots album cover

Jeff Gutt has a thankless task before him. Some might say impossible, even. He's replacing Scott Weiland, one of the most loved and recognizable frontmen of the last 30 years, ...


With Doom We Come

8.0 / 10 Summoning  - With Doom We Come album cover

Summoning have been at the forefront of Tolkien inspired metal for the twenty five years they’ve been a band. Formed in Austria in 1993, the duo take from the world ...

The Great Divide

Linger Over, Linger On

6.5 / 10 The Great Divide - Linger Over, Linger On album cover

The Great Divide came to my attention four years ago when they released their second release White Bird. At that time The Great Divide reminded me of bands like Stretch Arm Strong (Rituals ...



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.