According to One Man Boycott's frontman Joe Brewer, Counting The Seconds covers a range of topics including, but not limited to Love, hope, death, addiction, frustration, loss, kidnap, murder and relationships. As any pop-punk loyalist knows, literally everything sounds like it’s about the first three until a seemingly out of place line makes you realise that what your listening to is pretty far from a break up song.
'If I Survive' fits this template perfectly. Opening with soft, yet strong acoustic guitar, Brewer’s voice brings a steady flow to the somewhat relatable lyrics: “Do you ever doubt yourself from the bottom of your heart”. Classic, New Found Glory style, when you left me type stuff, right? Wrong! As the song progress’s it descends not in to anger, but rather a deeper, much darker sadness that begins to be felt in every line: “Let’s raise this glass one more time were getting better at loosing”. A fitting tribute to death and the departed.
Sadness aside, this album does lean more towards the happy side of its genre. Produced by the renowned Romesh Dodangoda, who has also worked with Kids In Glass Houses, Funeral For A Friend and Decade, Counting The Seconds sounds like it could have been recorded 13 years ago during the height of the pop-punk era. The first two tracks, 'Sunshine Pizza Friends' and 'If Only You’d Stay' are drenched in that awesome teenage, summer-will-never-die feeling that you used to get from bands like Fall Out Boy and New Found Glory. Heavy power chords, high pitched vocals and lyrics like: “I need you a little more than I want you” may sound easy to put together but it takes skill to make them into something that people can connect with.
There is such a great energy to the happier tracks; every second of each one is filled with something brilliant, be it an addictive riff, driving drums or those dangerously infectious "Whoas". The current single, 'Sick Of It All' has the catchiest chorus on the album, it flows so incredibly well and like many of the other tracks feels a lot longer than it actually is.
On a debut record that’s just over half an hour long, One Man Boycott are able to draw you in, get you hooked and leave you excited about the future of pop-punk. A notable achievement and a must listen for those of us who want to spend our free time day drinking in the sun, collecting band t-shirts, and standing in darkened, cider soaked rooms chanting “pop-punk’s not dead!”