Real Sickies – Out of Space

  • Cole Faulkner posted
  • Reviews

Real Sickies

Out of Space - STOMP Records

Edmonton pop-punk band Real Sickies wears their inspiration on their sleeve.  The band revels in their dominant Ramones-influence, and there’s no denying their clear love of stripped down three-chord pop-punk.  Their style is simple but distinct, and the combination of guitarist Rob Lawless’ steady rhythms with Ben Disaster’s familiar vocal style.  The band’s sophomore full length, Out of Space, comes only a year after the band’s debut, pushing out a stream of backlogged material having originally been delayed by lineup changes and health concerns, but it arrives in tip top condition and is well worth the wait.  

Fans of early Teenage Head, The Riptides, The Copyrights, and Teenage Bottle Rocket will feel right at home from the get go.  Out of Space blasts off with a steady beat and infectious chorus.  Disaster’s snarky vocals propel the initial flight of the self titled opening track right into an orbit of stringy chords that reach the stratosphere in a series of low-key rock n’ roll fuelled bridges, each compromising cabin pressure slightly more than the last.  From there the band invites listeners to explore a hurried soundscape layered with humming organ keys and “woah-oh-oah” chorus lines. Those like “Forget to Let Go,” “Not a Lifer” and “It’s Been a While” mark fun and fast excursions. “Running for my Life” thrives on a crunching bassline coupled with a speedy lurching tempo that mirrors the frantic don’t’-look-over-your-shoulder sprint driving the lyrics.  Others like “Bye Bye” infuse a rip roaring vintage dancehall feel, while those like “Top Down” bring out the retro lasers for a little intergalactic shootout. “Starry Eyes” even tones things down for a little pop-punk slow dance, complete with an elegantly swiped piano glissando – so don’t forget to shine your dress shoes before you put on that space suit.

Real Sickies make for an easy endorsement.  As far as simple old-school pop-punk goes, they are a fine addition to the Ramones inspired school of the genre.  Out of Space clocks in at a tight half an hour, and in keeping with tradition, there’s no room for filler. Sure, there’s nothing here that you likely haven’t heard before from like minded genre leaders, but Out of Space presents Real Sickies as top notch contenders set on a course that’s out of this world.