Anyone who knows the underground punk scene of New York City will be familiar with Jeff Rosenstock. Frontman of The Arrogant Sons of Bitches and collaborator of Bomb The Music Industry! Rosenstock has created a whole movement based on DIY ideologies. His music, merchandise, Infact his entire career has been handmade and from this comes ‘Worry.’, a third solo foray from one of New York’s most important staples of punk rock.
With stylings ranging from The Strokes to Frank Turner and a latter half that sounds like it has been lifted from a Tony Hawkes Pro Skater soundtrack, ‘Worry’ offers everything you could want from an album. Punk sensibility ties these tracks together but it’s at the more tender moments like ‘Wave Goodnight To Me’ that Rosenstock’s understanding of melody and pop music shine brightly.
‘To Be A Ghost’ highlights the power of Rosenstock’s lyrics singing “No one will listen up ’til you become a hashtag…” in protest of the perils of corporate internet. The uplifting punk rock of single ‘Blast Damage Days’ is executed with faultless precision, something that helps raise ‘Worry.’ high above its contemporaries. It also kick starts the second half of this album, a medley of songs rolled into one that cannot fail to have you out of your seat, jumping round like nothing else matters.
Rosenstock revisits his early work in Reel Big Fish-esque ‘Rainbow’ and ‘HELLLLHOOOOLE’ will be stuck in your head until someone writes something catchier… which might never happen! ‘Worry.’ is simple punk rock but it’s also complicated, beautiful, thoughtful, working class and perfect. With a career as prolific as his, any release will come under scrutiny but this covers all bases and makes it difficult to find any negative.
Rosenstock is a producer, a performer, a poet, a teacher, a role model to a new generation of punk rockers and, with ‘Worry.’, could add “Writer of 2016’s best album” to his ever growing list of accomplishments.
‘Worry.’ by Jeff Rosenstock is released on October 14th on SideOneDummy Records.
Words by Jay Harrison (@Just_Jay_89)