Just when you thought you’d never find yourself non-ironically shouting “Yeehaw!”, Demotivational Speaker comes along to change your mind. Get ready to slip on those neon jelly bracelets, because Yeehaw!’s latest album sounds just like junior high school.
True to its title, the LP is tightly wound with demotivating lyrics. It’s a fresher brand of pop punk—not just the angst-ridden flavor of groups like Modern Baseball—and veers on the side of erratic and gritty garage-rock. The hand-drawn album cover adds a certain charm, especially when it comes down to the staggeringly unfinished quality of the songs. In a sort of aversion to wholeness, there are plenty of rough edges in Demotivational Speaker.
But the roughness doesn’t detract completely from your ability to enjoy the album. For those who aren’t fans of pop punk, the genre can come off as overwhelmingly gloomy and rushed. Yeehaw!, however, manages to inject likability into even the grungiest of songs. “Pixie,” for example, dials back the heavy lyrics and sets them to an even-paced guitar, with an upbeat rhythm and a catchy, simple chorus. It’s more pop than punk, although Dylan Ewen and Matt Politoski’s dueling vocals verge on falling apart in the call-and-response chorus.
The song “Alternative Rock” embraces its title and is a caricature of the pop punk genre itself with its spitfire lyrics that embody the “I hate my town, hate my friends” spirit often found throughout the genre, all while overlaying aggressive drums. Perfect for moshing flannel-clad teenagers, it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser at live shows.
Overall, Demotivational Speaker is a morose, slightly sloppy release from Yeehaw!. Some tracks feel rushed, penned at full speed ahead to pack more minutes into the LP. It’s a good album to play in the background as you drive around running errands, or really, as you perform any mundane task; it underscores the persistent misery in our everyday lives.
- Reality packed into the sadness
- Has some catchy, upbeat tracks
- Missing something, like all of us are
- As a whole, feels rushed
- Too harsh a reminder of middle school
- Rough edges unattended to