Pop-punk has become notorious for sticking in a defined lane. It’s a frequent criticism that has blighted many of the genre’s recent breakouts, and given how Denmark’s Daycare For Jedi claim to be influenced by such acts as Neck Deep, Real Friends and The Story So Far, don’t expect them to be exempt from a similar fate.
But – silly band name aside – one of pop-punk’s most common compliments can be similarly attributed to their new album, ‘This Is What You Get’, in that it’s a lot of fun when it wants to be. As far as big hooks and sun-kissed instrumentation go, this band have both in spades. And the meatier guitars present on the likes of the title track and ‘Excuses’ are much more appealing than gloss-sodden pop-rock.
If there’s a problem to be found here, it mainly comes with frontman Jens Erik, in that his vocals can sometimes feel a bit out of control. Which does sour the overall experience somewhat. But, on the other hand, there’s such an exuberance and warmth to his performance that it’s hard to hold it against him. There’s clearly passion here. Especially on the red-raw ‘Brother’, which borders on melodic hardcore.
And at the end of the day, for a band so far removed from pop-punk’s geographical loop, it’s not really surprising that Daycare For Jedi are a bit rough around the edges. Even with the fact that you’ll probably have heard the majority of this album in some form before – ‘This Is What You Get’ is so likable and agenda-free that it’s hard to get frustrated at it. The most avid pop-punk fan who’s heard everything the genre has to offer, will still find this worth a spin or two.
‘This Is What You Get’ by Daycare For Jedi is released on 10th March on Prime Collective.
Words by Luke Nuttall (@nuttall_luke)