The last time we all heard from Bad Sports was with Kings of the Weekend. In the end, it was an enduring record, that although solid, might have rang a little bit too much like a one-trick pony. But, now that the band are back with Bras, you can rest assured that you’re not getting the same trick over and over; the boys have changed things up, leaving us with a refreshing bit of rock n’ roll.
Bras begins with “Get You” and “Washed Up,” which wear the clothes of the group’s first record. It’s quick punk-influenced rock n’ roll of the garage ilk, though the drumming stands out on these two tracks. As always, the band demonstrates their knack for wrapping their fury in catchy hooks built to please sweat drenched crowds willing to throw caution to the wind.
By the time that Bad Sports find themselves at the third track, they start to cross into new sonic realms. “Nothing In This World” is more of a power-pop track than anything the band have done to date, though by speeding things up in their own style, they maintain their tough street cred. But, it’s “Let Me In” where you’ll really see the changes. The track starts out with a dwindling guitar and vocal before it bounces into anthemic pop goodness. There’s even a bit of swing to the sound of the guitar as the song progresses. This all backs into “Back In Time;” this track definitely has the influence of glam rock power ballads. It’s refreshing to see the change in the group, aiding the enduring quality of this LP.
It’s hard to ignore a single track on Bras in the long run. Each one leaves a trail of breadcrumbs across the underground musical landscape, though they all have this pop sensibility built for screaming fans crammed into tight spaces. I can’t wait to catch these guys in the act and sing the chorus to “Terrible Place;” I’ll probably be pumping my fists throughout. Oh, and if the bubbling bass line in “Rockin’ the Noise,” I have a feeling we’ll all be bouncing about, rubbing elbows with each other like only great music can make us do.
For me, I think the latest record from Bad Sports is worthy of everyone’s time. It might have been true that the group was nodding to punk rock fans early on in their career, but the direction that Bras takes leaves no doubt that the band just want us all to join in on the fun. It’s rock n’ roll in the best sense, using great drumming, sing-a-long anthems and working-class grit that will leave you thirsting for more. Go on, press repeat. You’ll thank them later.[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/08-Terrible-Place.mp3]
Download: Bad Sports – Terrible Place [MP3]