Some initial thoughts on 3PM: Unapologetic pop-punk from a very young group of dudes in B’More. Catchy guitar pop in the vein of early Blink-182 and (very) early New Found Glory. Definitely reminiscent of the radio circa 2000.
Due to the musicians’ ages (ranging from 15-21) one could maybe call this vintage. Let’s be realistic for a moment here, when Blink-182’s career-defining Enema of the State was released, one of the members of 3PM was 2 and one of them was 1.
This is possibly why the group is so quick to fly the flag of bands like Good Charlotte (a group who, for those who were there, was sort of a four-letter word during their peak). This isn’t a bad thing, just an interesting note on the potential for “timelessness” from the genre’s early albums. Again, this is millennium-era radio-ready pop-punk that completely bypassed the hardcore influence that crept up on bands like New Found Glory later in their lifespan (meaning fans of Set Your Goals or A Day to Remember can skip this one). Fans of Blink-182 should check out the riff at the top of “You Can Only Find Her in the Safari Zone,” and those who sided more with New Found Glory can get their fix with “Your Best Mistake.”
Leaving the Past Behind in Favor of Uplifting Lyrics
GENRE: Hip-Hop HOMETOWN: Baltimore, MD ARTISTIC APPROACH: Transitioning out of rougher hip-hip. www.wordsmithmusic.com
Wordsmith’s latest release, King Noah, is designed as a musical time capsule for his one-year old son and fully represents his earlier departure from a rougher form of hip-hop. “I want to make music that my family can listen to,” he explains. “That my kids can listen to and they won’t cringe when they hear it.”
In fact, Baltimore rapper, single father, and businessman Wordsmith’s songs are completely devoid of explicit language since a period in 2003 when he stepped back and decided that family was his main priority. The lack of language is hardly noticeable under his smooth, old school hip-hop inspired lyrics and rhythms, which flow together seamlessly.
“Album of the year from the singer of Animal Collective”
Tomboy is the vivid sound of Panda Bear, aka Animal Collective frontman Noah Lenox, who after bearing his soul on his last solo record, is reemerging with a brighter outlook and frankly, a terrific album.
The opening track, “You Can’t Count On Me,” beings with the singer repeating the song’s title in Talking Heads-esque form. This avant-garde track sets the tone for what’s to come. Other numbers such as “Slow Motion,” and “Last Night At The Jetty” confirm Panda Bear as one of the great modern experimental artists. He takes chances that have traces of legendary bands like the Beach Boys and Lou Reed, depending on the moment you are listening.
Tomboy is a tremendous step forward for the leader of this wolfpack. As has been the norm with the Panda Bear project, Lennox has taken difficult, experimental music and brought it to a large-scale audience. Along with the standard heavy reverb are other world-woozy synths and droning-dream-pop songs. With that, it’s safe to say the singer still has the credibility and chops to pull off one of the most interesting and best albums of the year. (Paw Tracks)