There’s something incredibly inspiring about a band who owns their sound completely, who does things their own way and isn’t afraid to tell you exactly how they’re feeling. Combine that with a somehow-delicate pop-punk sound, and you’ve pretty much got my dream band – in this case, Diet Cig and their debut album, Swear I’m Good At This.
There’s something delightfully childlike about this punk band – which is a sentence I never thought I’d write. Vocalist Alex Luciano has a delicate sound, and when you layer that over the ever-intense guitar and percussion, it creates an intricate sound that makes me think of First Responder, another one of my favorite bands.
Because of this delicate sound, Diet Cig isn’t always intense, like in Apricots, the acoustic dreamy ballad in the middle of the album. On the other hand, you have songs like Link in Bio, which is a seriously intense jam. It’s unassuming, but when Alex croons, “So please f**k off” or when she yells, “Don’t/Tell/Me/To calm down”.
Every lyric is daring, and every lyric is unbelievably relatable, and Diet Cig combines that with the perfect sound – think First Responder meets a teeny bit of Jetty Bones meets a touch of The Regrettes. Often, the punkish guitar will come out of nowhere, and other times, thumping drums lead into a rush of emotion. It’s really a toss-up, and everything is entrancing.
In their Bandcamp bio, Diet Cig says that they’re here to “tear you away from the soul-sucking sanctity of your dumpster-fire life”. Well, lately, I’ve needed a little tearing away from my life, and this was the perfect album. It was so easy to get lost in the music, focusing on the depth of the lyrics or of the beautifully layered delicate-over-intense.