Twenty2 The Dudes of Hazard

Happy, sing-able pop punk songs are a dime a dozen, but there’s still something to be said for a band whose songs are as catchy and musically interesting as Twenty2’s. Comprised of ex-members of Subb, Thirdfall, and Bugs of Birdland, the band’s sound is most similar to the driving, compelling poppy punk rock of the foremost band. By infusing their simple pop songs with ample ear candy — a spicy drum fill here, a nifty guitar effect there — The Dudes of Hazard rises above much of the pop punk clutter of the current scene. While the songs on this record have a nasty tendency to blur into each other, some truly stand out from the pack. The first single, "Slip,” sets the bar for the rest of the record with its hooky guitars and strong percussive backbone. The double-time punk of "Fantastize” is a change of pace, and the pure rock and roll anger of "Whore” shows a much more aggressive side of the band. Despite having one too many songs in the same key, Twenty2 have created a fun summertime pop punk album for the kid on Ritalin in you. (New School)