Returning Strong, With No End In Sight
Author: Raymond A. Edel
The Living End
A serious car accident involving vocalist-guitarist Chris Cheney and the departure of drummer Travis Demsey contributed to the three-year hiatus between albums for the Australian pop trio.
With Cheney healthy and a new drummer, Andy Strachan – bassist-vocalist Scott Owen rounds out the lineup – the band returns with a potent blend of pop and punk.
The punk-edged kick-in-the-teeth “What Would You Do?” opens the album. Want pop? Try the hooky “One Said to the Other.” Eat your heart out, Good Charlotte.
Laced with an AC/DC-like intro (a tribute to a homeland band perhaps?), “Who’s Gonna Save Us?” is a catchy, jangly “call for help.”
“Jimmy” is a harmony-filled reminder of how good another Australian band, Midnight Oil, really was.
“Tabloid Magazine” sounds eerily similar to another anti-gossip song, “Sunday Papers,” Joe Jackson’s 1979 hit.
“So What” is a gorgeous bitter-sweet love song reminiscent of tunes by fellow Aussies Hoodoo Gurus.
“The Room,” another song with just a hint of AC/DC, is a mini epic. It’s sure to end up as the foundation for the band’s rock opera someday. Let’s hope that someday is sooner than later.
(The Living End is slated to open for No Doubt and Blink 182 on June 3 at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel.)