In praise of New Found Glory
Pop-punk band defines longevity and integrity
By Chris Jay 06/06/2013
For the past few years, pop-punk has been nothing short of a dirty word. After a massive rise in popularity in the early 2000s, which found bands like Green Day, Blink 182, Good Charlotte and Fallout Boy becoming platinum-selling, teen magazine-cover-gracing household names, the genre fell on hard times. Green Day, arguably the biggest pop-punk band ever, made a play for straight arena rock, complete with a Broadway musical, while other bands broke up or went on “hiatus” with bloated bank accounts and famous girlfriends in tow. Others genre-jumped and went on to make “more mature music,” which often just meant they abandoned the hooks for the looks and added a lot of screaming.Which brings us to 2013.
Essentially a decade has passed since pop-punk’s commercial peak, and under the nose of whatever is left of the music industry, there’s been a grassroots, underground pop-punk revival occurring. Led by bands like The Wonder Years, Man Overboard, The Story So Far, Set Your Goals and several others, the generation that grew up listening to bands such as MXPX and Saves The Day are now well into their 20s with bands of their own. Though slightly mutated from the straight pop-punk that dominated the early 2000s, with more of a hard-core influence, there’s one band whose footprint on this new generation is unmistakable: New Found Glory.
New Found Glory seemed to arrive just at the right time and rode the wave of success that the genre was experiencing in the early 2000s. It was an MTV staple, did the major-label ride with platinum- and gold-selling albums to boot, and definitely achieved a respectable level of fame; but really, it’s been the creative output and career path since that time that have really been impressive.
Starting with 2006’s Coming Home (a tour de force, criminally underrated record that saw the band exploring heavier subject matter and expanding its sound) and peaking with Radiosurgery (one of the best records of 2011, and one of the greatest pop-punk records of all time) New Found Glory has been on a creative roll that, due to the genre’s reputation, has been somewhat overlooked. With hook-filled songwriting, high-energy shows, relentless touring and legitimate respect and appreciation for the fans, the band has literally represented everything that’s great about pop-punk, and in many ways has single-handedly carried the genre on its back while many of its peers disappeared.
While it will be interesting to see just exactly how big this current wave of pop-punk will be, no matter the decade, New Found Glory stands as the bridge between two eras and as one of the most important bands of the past 20 years, a rare example of longevity and integrity.
New Found Glory will be performing the album Sticks and Stones in its entirety at the Ventura Theater on Thursday, June 6.