It’s been three years since PUP, Toronto’s pop punk delinquents, released its last album The Dream Is Over,and fans have been eagerly awaiting a new release since. After drip-feeding tracks over March, the newest album Morbid Stuff drops tomorrow.
This new release maintains PUP’s signature red-hot energy with a tight rhythm section and glistening guitar hooks, as well as Stefan Babcock’s usual impassioned lead vocal delivery. Along with the brightly-produced musicianship comes moments of respite within the songwriting and some welcome unorthodox chord progressions—evidence PUP is evolving into something continuously fun and interesting.
The album kicks into gear with its title track, its melodic instrumentation contrasting nicely against lyrics with vitriol and frustration—setting a consistent tone throughout the LP.
The track list maintains a steady pace forward, slowing only for intimate moments including the folky campfire intro on “Scorpion Hill” and “City”’s dreamlike, oozy calm before both songs inevitably bare their teeth.
A high point on the album is the viciously exhilarating track “Full Blown Meltdown,” a welcome pinprick among the more melodic tones of what precedes it. It Showcases some hardcore roots with its locomotive percussion and snappy bass lines from Nestor Chumash and Zack Mykula. The lyrics come off ruthlessly sarcastic and self-deprecating without overstaying their welcome.
“City,” the final song, is another high point. The aforementioned dreamlike quality of the intro evolves into a devilish and sombre latter half sporting a razor-sharp guitar lead from Steve Sladkowski that cuts its way through the song seamlessly.
Along with its consistent pace and tight production, Morbid Stuff unapologetically blends lip-curling disdain and bitterness with a juxtaposition of high energy and catchy songwriting. Lovelorn dogs and disillusioned millennials, drink your fill.