My love affair with The Bouncing Souls was a rather short lived one. It began in 1994 when my friend Kirsten gave me a copy of “The Good, The Bad & The Argyle” on a heavily dubbed over tape, and ended after I got tired of listening to “Maniacal Laughter.” To be fair, The Bouncing Souls did something that few punk bands ever accomplished—They grew up and their music matured without alienating their hardcore fans. I just wasn’t ready to give up songs about liking your mom for soccer chants and slower punk tunes.
I caught the band a few times over the past few years and was amazed at the size of their fan following. Unlike most bands from that era, the Souls’ fan base actually gained a massive amount of young followers, and the group has managed to become one of the biggest punk bands in the world without much radio play or MTV. However, when I saw them live, I didn’t know the new songs and just felt a little lost.
That all changed when I heard “Gasoline” on the radio a few years back. The song just clicked. I’m not sure if it was my age, new appreciation for music, or just a stroke of luck, but I fell in love with the song and quickly picked up a slew of their newer releases. When “Comet” was released, I quickly snatched up a copy on 180 gram vinyl and dug in.
Overall, “Comet” finds the Souls at their musical best. Songs like “Baptized” and “Static” rock out with a ferocity usually reserved for Bouncing Soul contemporaries like H2O. The former finds singer Greg Attonito shouting for a call to arms. “Fires raging in black days casting a new light / No more objects in our way the path comes into sight / Kings and thieves all haunted men running in the night,” Attonito roars like a Jersey version of Davey Havok. Tracks like “We Love Fun” and “DFA” are pure Bouncing Souls cheese wrapped in a blanket of pogo punk, and “Infidel” is just a brilliant minute and a half rip and tear classic.
The band fires on all cylinders on “Comet.” The only complaints are the length (only 10 tracks) and general lack of uniformity in the sequence. Hardcore songs segue into ballads, which lead to pop punk anthems. It’s a bit all over the place, but that’s nothing that can’t be cured with a bit of iTunes reorganizing.
If you’ve missed out on the Bouncing Souls for a few years (or a decade) now is a great time to dive in. And if you’ve been a long time fan, you’ll probably love “Comet”. This one rocks.
There are enough versions of “Comet” to satiate even the most diehard record collector. A slew of different colors are floating around in runs ranging from 100 to 500. I grabbed the 180 gram, because it is simply the best way to hear this wonderfully produced album. It’s pretty awesome that the band thought enough of the audiophiles to put one out at a higher quality, but at a decent price. The gatefold cover is also impressive. Make sure you check it out.
- 500pcs Aside/Bside Black/Blue Vinyl w/ Splatter (Mailorder Version) [SOLD OUT]
- 500pcs Aside/Bside Yellow/Red Vinyl w/ Splatter (Tour Version)
- 500pcs Blue Vinyl (Retail Version)
- 1000pcs Black 180gram Vinyl (Rise Records Version)
- 100pcs TriColor Red/Yellow/Green Vinyl [SOLD OUT]
- 400pcs TriColor Black/White/Blue Vinyl
- 500pcs Aqua Blue Vinyl