New Found Glory Not Without A Fight

New Found Glory Not Without A Fight
New Found Glory have been stuck in a strange position since the success of "My Friends Over You" in 2002; a band that came up through DIY punk and hardcore, their radio rock-friendly sound found them all over the TRL charts while still maintaining a devoted fan base from their earlier days, aided by the fact that guitarist Chad Gilbert once sang in Shai Hulud. After losing the plot a little with the mid-tempo rock of their last full-length, Coming Home, original flavour New Found Glory are back in full effect with this 36-minute pop punk manifesto. Charged with the energy demonstrated by their recent Bridge 9 EP, the band blasts out of the gate with "Right Where We Left Off," a clear nod to the past that barrels forward with the kind of energy last heard on Catalyst. It's not a perfect record - the later half fails to stand out the way the first five songs do, running together into a big, nice-sounding pop punk mess. But for the authoritative statement of "Listen To Your Friends" and "Truck Stop Blues" alone, this is a crucial release for fans of the band. And all the bands that ape them huge.

It seems like there are a lot of popular bands right now that are influenced by you guys the way you were influenced by the generation of bands before you.
Guitarist Steve Klein: Yeah, within the last three or four years, we've started to get more "sounds like New Found Glory." It's weird for us because we feel like we're still a young band. We toured with Green Day and I told Billie Joe that "Welcome to Paradise" was the first punk song I listened to, and then we go on tour with bands who tell us the first show they ever saw was us and the Movielife. It's surreal. I started this band when I was 15 and I'm almost 30 now. A lot of fads have come and gone. We've just stayed five regular guys in a band.

With the difference in styles on the last two records, do you need to make a conscious decision to switch gears when you're writing?
With Coming Home, Chad [Gilbert, guitarist] was in love at the time. He was writing all these slow love songs. We had fights in the studio and tried to make it as eclectic as we could but ultimately, fasts songs on that record would have wrecked the flow. But with this record, there was some darker stuff happening, and this was the record we wanted, and needed, to make. (Epitaph)