After a couple of highly acclaimed albums, many EPs and even a collection LP, Topshelf Records signings Sundials have made a welcome return to the scene with a new 6-song EP called ‘Kick’. Having been around for five years, the trio have firmly established themselves as a favourite in the punk-rock scene and this EP sees them reuniting with producer Mike Bardzik once more.
‘Dealin’ is an electrifying opener. Clocking in at just over two minutes, it’s a quick and vibrant song that finds the band talking about the rut of being trapped in a hometown you just want to escape: ‘I forget how small this town is’ and ‘I guess I’m still stuck in my own ways’ being just two examples of this. With talks of feelings, emotions and a healthy level of self-loathing, the song has elements of the Wonder Years, while the more forceful moments give a nod towards Pup. The following song ‘Splinter’ is even shorter, barely even getting to two minutes… With its catchy hooks, vibrant melodies and pop-punk aesthetics, it’s a song made for Reading Festival – you can just picture the sight of tonnes of fans singing the likes of ‘Why can’t I pick myself up anymore?’ and ‘Why don’t you stay at home instead?’.
Sundials have the knack of writing instantly appealing loud pop songs and none more capture this than ‘Gained a Grip’. With its Weezer-esque opening (and Rivers-like vocal delivery), it’s full of catchy hooks, group harmonies and talk of regrets amongst fuzzed-up guitar riffs, while the more straight-up pop-punk of ‘Stun Spore’ opens with the line: ‘For a second I forgot my name again’ and owes more to the likes of the Wonder Years. The closing song on the EP, ‘Eugene’, is the band at their most brash and confident sounding. Amidst a slacker Lemonheads-style sound, the band talk about how hard it is to get off the couch before finishing with the admission that: ‘It’s not the long walk that’s holding me back, it’s not the web I’m sticking to, it’s not that…’ and then the reveal ‘It’s just me’.
Whether you’re a fan of Alkaline Trio, Moose Blood or Pavement, you’ll find something to enjoy in this EP… Sundials are a band worth turning up.
‘Kick’ is released via Topshelf Records on 4 November.