How old is too old to play pop-punk? Some genres like blues or jazz have no limit when it comes to age but a number things like lyrical topics and the cliché nasally vocalist about pop-punk screams “I’m young.” I’d say if you are anywhere north of twenty-five that you are pushing the threshold of feeling like a goddamned fool if you are playing the pop-punk genre. In the case of Monday Ain't Happening they seem to be in the goldilocks zone when it comes to their age. After looking at pictures of the band on their Facebook page they most likely are still in high school and the music they play on their EP Critical is appropriate.
The three-piece band comprised of Marcus Swadling, Ash Rouse and Josh Matheson write straightforward pop-punk songs that are far from reinventing the wheel but still have the qualities and tropes fans of the genre tend to love. You can hear shades of bands as far back as Greenday and the evolution of pop-punk over the last twenty years in these songs.
The band opens with “Critical” which is a fast paced song that is catchy and contains lyrics about young love. He sings, “Here I am being critical, When you're over there being an emotional, Wreck again, just like before, It's all the same, the same old game.”
The band takes advantage of clean guitars on “The Distance In-between” which ends up sounding like a ‘90s alternative song while “That Kind of Night” is a fast-paced thriller that is over almost as quickly as it starts. “Who Am I” delves into the typical existential angst that teenagers experience. He sings, “So who am to anybody when no one knows my name? Just an invisible puppet on your strings? While you throw your punches and I do nothing? And who are you to tell me that these things will never change? Put me down all you want, but I’ll tell you one thing, I’ll rise above it and be something.“ The band closes out with “Green Street” and “Crisis” which both have a similar feel to songs that came before it.
At this point Monday Ain't Happening has a lot of competition. Pop-punk is so oversaturated with similar sounding bands that getting noticed is improbable. Monday Ain't Happening has some talent but will want to dig deeper to figure out what separates them from other pop-punk bands.
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