Static Radio NJ

Static Radio NJ

An Evening of Bad Decisions

Black Numbers

Before diving too deeply into the full-length debut by Static Radio NJ, let us first go back and reexamine the band’s 2007 seven-song seven-minute EP, One For the Good Guys. The unrelenting aggression put forth on that little hardcore snack had my mouth watering from the opening notes. They stormed out of seemingly nowhere (New Jersey) and found their way onto my stereo. Their melodies were sunk deep in the roots of Alkaline Trio/Green Day pop punk — especially that aforementioned opening song — while the angry projection of vocalist Mike, coupled with the insistent speed of guitar and drums set the band’s style more in keeping with Lifetime, Bouncing Souls, or even Minor Threat. Seven minutes was all it took to win my undying affection.

…but did the full-length push me over the edge into unquestionable love?

Not at first, no.

An Evening of Bad Decisions begins with a heart-churning drum beat, but when the vocals come out they feel softened. The grit and grime are ironed out and smoothed over with studio polish. The initial shock leads quickly to disappointment, I eject the disc and shelve it for a week before giving it another listen.

It takes several more spins, but once I can accept the singer’s new approach — which, thankfully, gets more raw as the album progresses — I am once more falling head over heels for Static Radio NJ. It’s “Green Hoody” that sinks the arrow into my heart, but once weakened, my heart begins to flutter at the sounds of “Ferren Decks,” “Fin,” and “In Your Dreams.” And that was only the beginning. Slowly but surely, I came around to adoring every note that burst from the speakers. Even the opening song “Marc” — the one which I had previously dismissed completely — finds my soft spot and tickles it.

Ah, hell, it took me a couple of weeks, but I’m completely salivating for this album and officially in love with this band.

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