SKRWD is WSTR’s debut EP and was released on September 4th via No Sleep Records. WSTR are the perfect blend of old school pop punk, evident with their riffs, and new age pop punk shown most strongly through the vocals.
SKRWD opens up with an aggressive ‘South Drive’ with the shouting type of singing that Neck Deep popularised. Not that they sound like a carbon copy of ND or anything, they have a clear and original sound amidst the familiarity of the pop punk hooks. This originality is most evident in track three, the highlight of the album; Graveyard Shift. They released a video for this song back in May that was directed by Elliott Ingham. It involves them playing in a graveyard in black and white make up and having a subway thrown at them by Ben Barlow (there’s also a tiny little puppy in there!).
It’s a great bunch of songs that nicely address the stuff most people in their early adulthood experience nowadays. The album’s lyrics tell tales of off kilter friendships and being stagnant in a shitty job with shitty pay, and no prospects. The technical level of this album is far more superior than one would expect from a debut EP. The band are tight, the song layout runs smoothly, and the production value is pretty high.
The EP ends on a high point with ‘Devils N Demons’, leaving you hungry for more. If this is only their first offering, I can’t wait to see what they make next.
Words by Lissa