Sound — 8
Pop punk is probably becoming tiresome to most music fans, but sometimes a band comes along who knows how to harness its power chord energy and make an album that punk fans from all corners of the globe can rally behind, and Every Avenue's new CD, Picture Perfect from Fearless Records stokes that kind of excitement. The album's strength lies in the textbook style of their power pop spins and their pancaking of electro cinders pressed into a punk-tinged grinding. Lead vocalist/pianist David Ryan Strauchman lead the quintet with a firm hold on the rollicking movements as the ramped up twisting and squeezing in the guitar chords engineered by Joshua Randall and Jimmie Deeghan thicken the frothy churning which adjust to the revving thrusts in the bass pulls of Matt Black and the incessant pounding of drummer Dennis Wilson amplifying the music's punk drenched emissions. Tracks like Tell Me I'm A Wreck and the title track inject an electro-punk thrashing along the bobbling grooves, and the shuddering drum kicks of Girl Like That are shingled in crunching guitars. The piano-driven ballad Happy The Hard Way has a tooling of light cymbal taps wedged by shallow troughs and broad crescendos. The midtempo grooves of Saying Goodbye and I Forgive You have a party punk beating which contrasts the folksy acoustics lining The Story Left Untold to produce a sullen mood with a meditative glint in the guitar hooks, all the while Strauchman molds his vocals to the setting of the music.
Lyrics — 7
Every Avenue's lyrics reminisce about the past taking a deeper look at days gone by and relationships that were too hard to hold onto like in Clumsy Little Heart as Strauchman reveals, It's hard to know where you are going / When you don't know where to start / But that's just life and that's the hardest part. In For Always Forever the lyrics have a more general scope, We were young and we lived it up / But those nights never lasted long enough / Looking back, we were so nave / What happened to the days when we shared our dreams / If I could go back now / I wouldn't change a thing / Oh, it feels so good to say / Guess we made it this far / Guess we're doing all right / Looks like we made it out alive / Yeah, we made our mistakes but we followed our hearts / Even though we drifted apart.
Overall Impression — 8
Pop punk's biggest asset is being able to spike people's adrenaline levels which Every Avenue's songs do right from the start. Produced by Mitch Allan and Mike Green, Picture Perfect has a power pop finish relatable to Boys Like Girls, and an electro punk plumes reflective of All Time Low. Every Avenue are being steered towards becoming pop punk's new poster boys, and they have the music to back up the moniker.