At this year’s Romophos concert, raising money for OSU’s Star House, I got to see three very different local bands play at the Newport: First Responder, Flashback Humor, and Captain Kidd. Of course, I already knew the openers, but I’d never heard Flashback Humor’s music before. Seeing them play live, the energy was tangible as every single member of the band jumped around onstage. It was clear that they were having the time of their lives up on that stage, and nobody could convince me otherwise. So, of course, I had to write about their album.
Things Are Most Beautiful Just As They’re About To End is a classic punk rock album – heavy guitar, rough vocals, et cetera… Except that this band features a suave saxophone player (who also happens to be a rapper/hip-hop artist on the side).
My personal favorite track, Norman, features the saxophone layered over the rest of the heavy instrumentation. It adds a layer of uniqueness to their typical rock sound. The rest of the tracks have similar sounds: angry, political lyrics; intense, shouting vocals; nearly overwhelming percussion. It’s got a typical rock vibe.
I’m gonna be totally honest here: I’m torn on whether or not I love this album. I really dig a lot of the guitar solos, and the saxophone player absolutely kills it. When it comes to their lead singer, Joey, his passion shines through on every word, but it’s a little bit rough for my taste. However, I do think that his vibe and his vocals fit with both the band’s style and their “screw the system” message.
I have to say, I did like this band better live. I think that their energy and passion translated much better on the stage – but maybe that’s just because it’s difficult to top the levels of intensity that I saw on Thursday.
Generally, this highly political, angry sound is pretty popular within the shoegaze scene, and since I’m not super familiar with that genre in general, don’t take my words at face value – go listen to the album yourself!