Broadside – Into The Raging Sea
Released: July 24, 2020
Ollie Baxxter| vocals
Patrick Diaz | bass
Jeff Nichols | drums
Domenic Reid | guitar
Dusting off their Old Bones (see what I did there?), punchy pop punk fever band Broadside are finally back for their new album, Into the Raging Sea. Even just from the dramatic change in cover art work compared to their previous albums, we already know this record will be full of surprises and concepts we have yet to see from the band.
You know how you always expect the title track of an album to be the best one? Well boy, have Broadside knocked this one out of the park. ‘The Raging Sea’ is an absolute masterpiece. Every time I listen to this song (and I promise you, I’ve played it A LOT) it feels like the first time and still gives me HUUUUGE goosebumps. Just like a raging sea, the track starts off so calm and peaceful. Through Baxxter’s hypnotising vocals, Nichols’ echoey drums and Reid’s beautiful guitar chords that seem to float so effortlessly on the surface, I was pretty happy just drifting along. The lyrics ‘Is there any point? What’s the fucking point?’ hint to something building up, momentum steadily creating bigger, angrier waves. Now hold onto your floatation device, because when the main chorus kicks in it may cause you to drown (in emotions). This is one hell of an opening track and sets the bar so incredibly high for the rest of the album. Let’s see if they can out do themselves.
‘Foolish Believer’ was the first track released from the album and is everything we love about pop punk. The song speaks about believing in yourself and that even though you experience some hard times and life can feel lonely, the storm will pass and things will get better. While still keeping the bouncy Broadside sound we know and love, it includes a one a kind of shimmering rhythmic hook making it a huge pop banger.
‘Overdramatic’ wastes no time and jumps straight in with a classic pop punk guitar riff (that’s what we came here for right?!) Baxxter’s vocals really remind me of Issues in this track and I seriously dig it. Some cute synths have been incorporated throughout the bridge of this song, which is something we’ve not heard from the band before.
Next up is ‘Nights Alone’, which is a nostalgic, love-sick teenage anthem with huge 80’s synth-pop vibes showcased through chimey keyboard chords and electric beats. ‘Heavenly’ is the most recent release from the album and can be best described as a lovey-dovey pop punk jam. Though musically and lyrically it doesn’t take us on much of a journey, it’s super fun and will be a hit with all lovers of this genre. ‘Dancing On The Ceiling (With You)’ is pretty similar sound wise, full of infectious guitar melodies and rhythmic drumming, it’s just an array of foot tapping goodness.
Slowing the pace, ‘Seasons’ is a punky, spot lit ballad that gleams as bright as a moon beam. The chorus of this song may be a typical pop-punk sounding melody, but you just can’t help but love it. When Baxxter sang ‘Don’t even love myself so wait in line’, I felt that. I know my fellow emos will feel this track too.
The 8th track on the album ‘Breathe You In’ started off promising with a super catchy intro, but ended up feeling a bit repetitive. I mean it’s an okay track, I guess one you could have on in the background while you’re doing something (haven’t you already made enough banana bread in lockdown?). But I don’t think it added much to the overall value of the album and just felt like a filler song.
Picking up the pace, ‘The Setting Sun’ grabs your attention from the get go with a guitar riff that could have been straight out of a Paramore track. I found it pretty impossible to sit still while listening to this track and actually had to take my headphones off and blare it on my speaker. It’s super infectious and production wise again feels like a massive growth spurt for the band.
‘Burning At Both Ends’ opens with a beautiful piano melody and introduces some dark, heavy vocal effects used throughout the song which gives the song a lot of weight. Overall it’s a beautiful song and it’s nice to see the band take a slower pace, though I’m not sure if it works well as the final track on the record. It just doesn’t close the album as well as possibly ‘The Setting Sun’ may have and left me feeling like I’d just had a breakup without closure.
It’s tricky, do you put the best song on the album at the start to grab people’s attention, in the middle to hold your audience’s attention, or at the end to wrap it up with a bang? ‘The Raging Sea’ is such an HUGE track and massive stand out, that having it at the start kind of made it difficult for the rest of the songs to live up to its standard. I will say that some pop punk albums are often full of tracks that are same samey and all seem to mesh together with no real standouts. What Into The Raging Sea does so well, is keep all the addictive elements of pop punk we know and love, while experimenting with older music styles such as the 80’s synth-pop themes that sporadically pop up throughout and go super well with the general aesthetic of the album.
Overall, it’s so exciting to see how much Broadside have grown and matured since their last album. A large majority of the tracks radiate this feeling of pure bliss and euphoria and just leave you feeling pretty damn good. Into The Raging Sea is a pretty fitting name since this release is a huge sea change for Broadside. Overflowing with punchy and addictive instrumental fever, it’s everything we love about pop punk. Having vastly matured since their last release, the band have made it adamantly clear that through their new gleaming direction, they will continue to surprise and conquer for the foreseeable future.
Broadside – Into The Raging Sea tracklisting
1. The Raging Sea
2. Foolish Believer
4. Nights Alone
7. Dancing On The Ceiling (With You)
9. Breathe You In
10. The Setting Sun
11. Burning At Both Ends