In a universe where everybody and their grandmother has a punk band, its refreshing to hear a new band that stands out. This particular band is Pleading guilty and from the first track they immediately stand out above the crowd.
This punk rock foursome hail from colorado and as a fellow Colorado resident I was very involved in the scene during the late 90s. We had some great punk bands but sadly only a handful of christian bands. Of course the most well known band was Five iron frenzy and Pleading guilty would have fit in nicely alongside them in the scene during the late 90s. Thank goodness that Pleading guilty has finally descended upon the mile high city.
These guys have mastered the hard hitting style and sound of southern california melodic punk bands and don’t let up over the course of the 11 songs. I hear a huge No use for a name vibe in the guitar style and vocally theres a Nofx, Pulley, Dogwood style delivery. The singers voice has a tendency to dip a bit low in the albums mix and he has a tendency to sound strained at times, but overall his voice fits nicely with the sonic boom drum beats and killer lead guitar riffs.
The first song hits with a bang and I just love the intro audio which is a clip of what sounds like a chopper crashing and a mayday distress call. the lyrics are great and speak of rough seas and hopelessness being lost and almost drowning in a relentless ocean.I picked up a double meaning upon the mention of the rescue at sea at the end of the song. Jesus is our rescue and he will always reach out his hand to save us in the midst of turbulent times.
As the album presses on it keeps delivering a powerful punch. During the chorus of the second song, the backup vocals come in and it sounds as if I’m listening to a No use for a name song. The No use influence is unmistakeable, yet these punkers do a perfect job of crafting their own blend of punk anthems.
Theres such a lack of good southern california style, melodic punk in the christian scene these days. Pleading guilty is in my opinion, the new face of melodic christian punk. These guys are going places and Defacto delivers stand out lead guitar riffs layered over fast catchy guitar work and is backed perfectly by the quick punchy drums. I love the sound of the snare. Its not tuned too high pitched and sounds great in the mix.
Lyrically, I love that these guys aren’t too in your face preachy and they write songs that make you think and that inspire. Thumper punk has some amazing bands on their roster but many of the bands I find to be a bit tiresome lyrically. Thumper punk has scored a jewel with Pleading guilty and the Denver punk scene will be greatly enhanced by their presence
Do yourself a solid and grab this album and see for yourself why it stands strong among its punk predecessors. If I could give this a 4.5 I would, but I will rate this a strong 4. I hope to hear much more from these guys in the future. One last thing that people need a heads up about is that the physical copy has 11 songs and the digital has 10. I don’t know why they did it this way, but I strongly recommend all 11 songs.