Every once in awhile, an album falls through the cracks; IVM’s hiatus, bands breaking up, or even just the simple discovery of “old gold” years later results in plenty of great music that hasn’t gotten much coverage but certainly deserves to be revisited. So, this is the first of what I hope will become a growing list of throwback reviews. Feel free to send me some ideas and I’ll do my best to make sure they’re covered. For a variety of reasons, I’ve chosen to not make these traditional reviews with ratings but instead want to highlight the artist and encourage readers to check out bands.
Good Luck Varsity was a pop-punk/post-hardcore band based out of the greater Detroit metro. They were known for their three-part harmonies, honest lyrics, and enormous energy. They released several EPs, saw several member changes, and eventually disbanded. Curtains, their first and final full-length, was released posthumously.
Curtains is the Good Luck Varsity album no one thought we’d ever get but that we knew we wanted. Thematically, it treads somewhere between nostalgic and hopeful for the future. Musically, it’s a diverse adventure. It’s honest. It’s raw. It’s fun. It’s serious. It’s an emotional experience. Granted, many of the emotions are only amplified by the group’s history and their disbanding that occurred some point during the construction of the album.
Good Luck Varsity has never been shy lyrically and Curtains only continues this trend. Take Vultures, for instance.
What is it about the passionate and proud that makes the opposition grow? When will you vultures see, when you prey upon the weak you reap the poison that you sow?
Other songs, like Wretch: Part II, turn the lens of criticism internally.
Oh, love. When did my strength become my weakness?
This is a personal favorite of mine, with ambient guitar stylings and some pretty interesting drumming.
The final song, Curtains, serves as a great close to the album. The lyrics lament the end of the band, while also reminiscing on the good times of touring. The song, and thus album, end on the following lyrics (originally from the song Mountains):
I am a liar. I am a dirty thief. I am a beggar, but when You move in me, the whole earth shakes. I’ll bring the mountains down.
Though the band ended quickly and unexpectedly, Curtains was a great an unexpected way to provide closure to fans, remember the good times the band had, and leave the past behind in lieu of what lies ahead.