I am a pretty big fan of The Get Up Kids. When they broke up in 2005, I was totally not stoked about it. I had never gotten a chance to see them live. In 2008, they announced their reunion and I was fucking excited.
It was just going to be some reunion shows. Then they announced that they were start working on new material. October 2009 rolled around, and the first of their new songs was initially released on Daytrotter. It was the song “Your Petty, Pretty Things.” Now, no, it was not an epic return to Four Minute Mile or Something To Write Home About. It was, however, a great fucking track. It would not have sounded out of place on Guilt Show.
So, in November 2009, I finally got to see them live. They played at The Metro in Chicago, and it was a great set. It was enough to tide me over, but I was still waiting for their new shit. April 2010 rolled around, and the new record finally came out. I did not actually get it until May, because Interpunk apparently does not understand how pre-orders work. Either way, it was 4 new songs. Fuck yes. Did it live up to the hype I had built up around it? Well, yes and no.
“Your Petty, Pretty Things” showed up here. It was a lot cleaner sounding than their Daytrotter session version. It was your average mid tempo pop rock song. Not the return to midwestern emo I was hoping for, but generally great. This is basically what the other songs sounded like. Mid-tempo, catchy, you know the drill. “Tommy Gentle” kicked in with the killer vocal harmonies you expect with this band. “Keith Case” was a heavily distorted, almost droney, type song. But, everything I loved about the band was their. The vocal harmonies, the catchy pop hooks. There was no way I would not love this goddamn EP.
That said, there were some things that bugged me. I was expecting something more in line with Guilt Show. This was not really met. These songs are more experimental. James Dewees definitely did more with the keyboard and synth sounds on this record. Generally it sounded great, but the closing song “How You’re Bound” suffers because the damn synth is so high in the mix. That coupled with it being a 6 minute song made it stand out, but not for the best of reasons.
Long story short, it is a solid EP. If’n you were a fan before, you will be able to get down to this. It is not going to bring them any new fans. But, I do not think that was the point. I will give it a 3.5 out of 5. Totally enjoyable, but not something that will be in heavy rotation. Still one of my favourite releases of the year. And, man, when they drop their new full length this winter, I will be right there to buy it.