Exclaim!'s Top 20 Pop & Rock Albums, Part One Best of 2016

14. PUP
The Dream Is Over
(Royal Mountain)
The sophomore album slump can be a difficult hurdle to clear, but with The Dream Is Over, PUP soared over it, delivering a record packed with punchy pop-punk gold.
It starts with the all-too-real ode to life on the road, "If This Tour Doesn't Kill You I Will," then blasts right into the dangerously drunken blur that is "DVP," both tracks setting a standard for dressing up dark lyrical content with sugary "oohs," "whoas" and musical accompaniment begging to be moshed to.
The fast, furious pace of tracks like "Sleep in the Heat," "My Life Is Over and I Couldn't Be Happier" and "Familiar Patterns" comes to an end on album closer "Pine Point," letting the band show off their dramatic storytelling capabilities with a quiet start that builds into a proggy epic.
Just because something is loud and brash and fun doesn't mean it's not really fucking good, and The Dream Is Over is proof. If the dream is to churn out a career's worth of great albums, here's hoping that PUP are just getting started.
Sarah Murphy