Album Review: Waterparks – Double Dare

I haven’t been able to stop dancing for the past few days. Why? Pop-punk band Waterparks just put out their debut album, Double Dare, and I’ve had it on repeat everywhere I go. The record is almost like All Time Low or Fall Out Boy, but with a twist – a hit of electronics makes it impossible for Double Dare to blend in with the rest of the all-too-similar pop-punk world.

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The album cover.

Double Dare melds irresistible melodies with rocking guitar chords to create an impossibly upbeat album. This classic pop-punk sound, shared by labelmates Sleep On It, takes a turn with Waterparks’s multifaceted touch. Elements of electronic, hip-hop, and pop keep the album from becoming yet another pop-punk wannabe, aided by lead singer Awsten Knight’s honest lyrics, like Dizzy‘s, “If I could, I’d trade my heart for a second brain/I wish I was as brave as my last name suggests”. These twists on the expected sound prove that Waterparks is not to be ignored. 

As I listened, Double Dare consistently surprised me. Where I was expecting the same sound I’d heard countless times before, I was met with songs like 21 Questions, which begins acoustic and flares into rocking guitars and heavier percussion about halfway through, or Powerless, which was softer and floaty, yet contrary to the title, lacks no strength. Nothing is boring in this album, and Waterparks uses their debut to prove that they certainly are not another pop-punk cliché to be ignored.

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The band, courtesy of Equal Vision Records.

The album cover is no lie – this record is exactly as colorful as it seems. The irresistible danceability combines with Awsten Knight’s pretty-boy charisma to create a genuinely fun record, although there’s no shallowness to it. I’ve been jamming to it pretty much nonstop, and I don’t think I’ll get any of this album out of my head any time soon. Seriously, check it out. You’ll be rocking out for the rest of the weekend.

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