Lagwagon | Blaze | Fat Wreck Chords

With bands like Blink-182 and Good Charlotte pumping out pop-punk like someone after a bad encounter with Jack in the Box, it’s refreshing to know that after their last release five years ago, Lagwagon hasn’t lost their style. Their sixth album, Blaze, is a reminder that all good punk is not dead.

Straight from our very own backyard, Goleta, Lagwagon proves this town can be good for more than an underage drinking fest. They have been churning out tunes since 1990 and have agglomerated a sizable following ever since their first release, Duh, in 1992. The band took a break after their fifth full-length album, Let’s Talk About Feelings, and pursued outside projects. Both drummer Dave Raun and singer Joey Cape have been playing with Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, while guitarists Chris Rest and Chris Flippin temporarily joined Rich Kids on LSD, better known as RKL. Yet, the wait fans were forced to endure has been atoned for with their most recent endeavor.

Unlike many of today’s punk bands, Lagwagon actually has something to say and the musical chops to back it up. The guitar solo at the end of “Lullaby” combined with lyrics like “Every generation hates the next/ I will save the millions from a slow insufferable death/ I’ll put them to sleep” directs our attention to more than simple whining about girls. Don’t get thrown off by the second track and current radio single, “E Dagger,” which seems to reinforce the unwritten commercial punk rule of incorporating a catchy poppy song. It only lasts two minutes.

[Monique Sherman would like to add she has no qualms with J in the B. She just thinks it’s naaasty.]