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May 18, 2024

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Full Circle (Epitaph Records)

By: Alex Steininger

After the tragic loss of founding bass player Jason Thirsk, Pennywise is back with a bang! Melodic fast-paced punk, with deep lyrics that will make you think, is the Pennywise way!

They kick it off with "Fight Till You Die." A face paced, hard edged punk rock tune about how the government and the rich control our society, while the homeless and poor struggle to live. Their solution is to fight back. Fight the system, and fight the rich who just don't care! With the energy that is in this song, there is no question in my mind that Pennywise would be great leaders to lead the revolt against society! If they are this energetic in the first track, you can only imagine the power the whole album will contain, and believe me, the energy holds until the last minute! Track two, "Date with Destiny," continues with the energy, power, and thought out lyrics about life and others struggles with it. Jumping to track seven, "Running Out of Time." It starts out with fierce drumming, and then the fearless bass and the melodic (but fast) guitar enter the song. Not only is Pennywise mind provoking with their lyrics, hard and fast, but they also keep the melody bright and shining! They'll bring you in with the melody, and you'll come out thinking about their lyrics. A great strategy on their part. Track eight, "You'll Never Make it," starts out with a bass line that jump-starts the song, with help from the energy of the drums and the guitar! And when the vocals enter, all other thoughts in your mind are wiped clean, as you pay full attention to the song! The CD ends with "Bro Hymn Tribute." A tribute song to the late Jason Thirsk. It starts out with a group of people talking, and yelling "this is how Jason would have wanted it, this one is for Jason!" Then a very catchy bass line infects your mind, while you listen to the band pour out emotion. Taking aside their political emotion side, they throw in some personal emotions, and open themselves up to you, in remembrance of Jason. And they do it with style. This track is one of the best tracks on the album, if not the best track. It's pure lyrics about one of their friends, and all the love the song projects towards there friend makes you wish you knew him as well. He seems to be the type of guy that once you get to know him, you never forget him. And Pennywise does a great thing by dedicating the entire album to him, as well as write this song for him, which is sure to become a classic down the road. And as always, don't forget to keep your CD player running after the final track...

I once read that Pennywise was thinking about breaking up after the death of their friend, and I'm glad they didn't. It would have been another great loss to the music world. Their power and insight add so much to their melodic fast paced brand of punk rock. I would give this album an A+. It is just too good to put down!

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