Review by Shannon Shumaker

WSTR’s new EP, SKRWD is bound to hit home with pop-punk lovers everywhere. With aggressive vocal stylings similar to that of The Story So Far or Neck Deep and catchy choruses that are sure to worm their way into your head, the six songs on SKRWD are each strong and memorable.

While the first song on the EP, “South Drive” does sound very similar to other pop-punk bands that are currently dominating the scene, the thing that sets WSTR apart from the others are the fast paced vocals in the chorus. This song is infectious and catchy - by the time it comes to an end, you’re bound to be singing along with it, regardless of if it sounds similar to other bands or not. The following track, “Fair Weather,” however, really sets these guys apart from other pop-punk bands. This song is much more on the punk side of things. WSTR obviously know what they’re doing, too, as the song feels very confident and well written. The verses are aggressive and fast paced while the chorus is catchy as hell and sing-along worthy, which quickly becomes a staple in WSTR’s sound.

“Graveyard Shift” is another strong track, but for different reasons from “Fair Weather.” The lyrics on this “Graveyard Shift” are very relatable and realistic. This is what good pop-punk does, it makes you connect and feel something. The next song, “Brainsick” feels very polished.

“Ain’t Great” is angry and full of honest lyrics, such as, “Fuck you and everything you do,” or “Some days it feels like I’ve been hit by a fucking bus.” Despite the harsh and honest lyricism, the song does have a rather positive spin on it, too, especially in lines like, “It ain’t great but it’s better than yesterday.” The aggression and catchy chorus makes this song one of the strongest on the EP, followed by the catchy closing track, “Devils ‘N Demons,” which hosts quite a bit of strong guitar work.

SKRWD is a very self-assured and confident release from WSTR, the product of a band who knows who they are and aren’t trying to be anything they’re not. This album is the epitome of pop-punk, filled with catchy choruses, aggressive verses and memorable guitar hooks. It’s not necessarily a game changer by any means, but SKRWD is consistently strong, and that’s really all that matters. There is no questioning who WSTR is, as they make that very clear with these catchy pop-punk tracks that are sure to leave you singing along long after the EP comes to a close.

Rating: 4.5/5

Listen to "Ain't Great" 


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