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Thursday 8 February 2024

The Second Summer – Undertow


Now here's an album that is right up our street. Chicago's The Second Summer are a quartet that go back to the glory days when singles led to albums and Undertow is the resulting album and in more ways than one, this is truly an album of killer singles. 

Everything built on crackerjack riffs, melodic Guitar Pop and massive choruses that lead to memorable songs. They can be anything you want them to be, largely the best of Pop Rock from the past three or more decades.

Take for instant, the magnificent Something. A song that its heart sounds like a Jon Auer Posies song, but also glimpses of Teenage Fanclub and a rocked up Undertones. It is a wondrous listen. Yet Invisible is more 80s Jangle Pop.

Undertow opens with the Power Pop monster that is The Reason, a very 90s Not Lame affair that fully demonstrates the joy of the genre. Melodic verse, massive chorus, great harmonies and a riff that hooks you completely.

Wonder Why is again great Jangle Pop, sped up this time with a more Fountains Of Wayne feel and a corking Guitar solo. Yet Adults has a more melancholic 90s woe affair, a little REM or IRS and a haunting riff that is very College Rock.

Bad Feeling splits Weezer with West Coast Guitar Pop and offers more melodic joy. Undefeated rocks things up, more than a little Feeder and Never Not Forever is the nearest that you will get to a Ballad, but is still anthem with its crashing chords and the Guitar parts edge towards UK Glam Rock. 

I love albums that are built on choruses, but Undertow is much more than that. At times, I think we are moving away from Pop Rock a little and then an album like this makes you realise that you are not in any way, you were just waiting to be rewaken and this album woke me up clearly.

You can listen to and buy the album here. I will update this review when I have the album release date. My good friend Patrick has a great interview with Steve Gatland on his Sweet Sweet Music Blog here.


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