It’s going to be a huge year for California label Pure Noise Records.
This February, the punk outlet is set to debut recorded work from one of their newest signees, Like Pacific of Toronto, Canada. After years of writing, recording, and small-scale touring, Like Pacific is serving up a new spin on the same conversation for the pop-punk genre. Instead of harping on topics like heartbreak in a disheartened display, Like Pacific vehemently channels frustrations with great conviction.
Their debut LP, Distant Like You Asked is a reaction to being cast aside and labeled good-for-nothing by loved ones and society. The album is scheduled to be released just over a week into the Alternative Press 2016 World Tour, on February 19th, as support for State Champs and Neck Deep.
The album opens up with Jordan Black taking a breath and launching into speedy, almost-spoken vocals à la Taking Back Sunday’s “Make Damn Sure.” The track “Richmond” is a punchy tune about losing feelings for a person who continually reappears in your life, messing with your emotions. Black approaches the lyrics with gruffer vocals than other contemporaries, which restores hope for progression in the genre.
Black’s voice is sure to appeal to fans who enjoy a harsher, raspier take on the pop-punk sound. “Distant” follows the first track and samples two different vocal styles; rough and melodic. This combination effectively conveys the full-scale of emotions the songwriter was going through.
The third song on Distant Like You Asked is the album’s first single, “Worthless Case”, a shouty retort to a person who believed you were never there in the first place. The remaining songs on the 10-track album continue to elaborate on the anger towards the person who is pushing the voice away.
“Commitment” and “Dim” particularly stand out as favorites that fans will demand in a live setting. “Commitment” offers straight-from-the-shoulder imagery that blends well with the tune about being chained down to circumstance. “Dim” poses several instrumental-heavy moments that showcase the talent of other band members when placed apart from Black’s vocals. The album ends on a high-note with “Scarred”, a song that sets a mission statement for Like Pacific: “I’d rather bleed to death/Than be forgotten.”
Like Pacific offers a refreshing addition to the current pop-punk scene. The recent exit of figurehead groups Man Overboard and Major League, as well as the overhaul of pop-punk founding father Blink-182, leave big shoes to fill. Labels must take initiative in signing and producing new talent, and Pure Noise is known for offering emerging acts the chance of a lifetime. Like Pacific’s neoteric take on the struggles of being a sidelined, heartsick kid with Distant Like You Asked is compelling and certainly worth checking out.
Don’t keep your distance from Like Pacific!