“SKRWD” by WSTR, EP Review

NSR156 (1)SKRWD is the new EP from the UK pop-punk band WSTR. The EP comes out on September 4th through No Sleep Records. Listening to it is a little bit like taking a blast to the past. WSTR claims to be a product of the music that they listened to growing up, and it’s obvious. SKRWD is heavy with influences from Blink-182, Sum 41, New Found Glory, and other similar bands. But while the influences and similarities are obvious, WSTR still packed a lot of originality into the new six-track record.

Very much like the bands that came before them, SKRWD is primarily driven by heavy guitars, harsh percussion, and painfully relatable lyrics screamed at the top of their lungs. There’s a nice flow from beginning to end, with the songs and melodies just effortlessly transitioning into the next. The lyrics have good stories and lots of meaning behind them.

“When we started the band we were all in a situation of waking up every morning, going to work, coming home and going to sleep. It felt like we were just wasted space and not really doing much with our lives other than working. To be honest, that situation hasn’t really changed other than now we’re really broke due to band commitments, which is where the EP name, ‘SKRWD’, came from. But, this band has given us all something to do, and to be proud of; like, we aren’t prepared to just settle for a boring, generic lifestyle anymore and we’ve decided to do something about it.”

– Sammy Clifford, vocalist for WSTR

Despite the influences and similarities to the bands that came before them, WSTR does carve out a place for themselves in the pop-punk genre. They stand out mainly in their lyrics, while falling into the same themes tell totally different stories reflective of their lives and personal experiences. “Graveyard Shift” uses very visual lyrics to describe their experience of feeling life go by but being stuck in a rut. “Fair Weather,” on the other hand, tells a touching story about friendships even through the worst of times, with creative relatable lyrics like “At the end of the day / my friends are dicks but / I would never have it any way”.

WSTR also make themselves stand out from their influences by differences in composition, as well as the way that the music is produced. Though these differences are small, and might not be noticed right off the bat. Nevertheless, at the end of it all, you have a great record that’s a trip down memory lane as well as the start of something new. With SKRWD, WSTR managed to capture the best of their influences while creating their own sound. It gives them a great base line to launch themselves into stardom.

SKRWD is out on September 4th through No Sleep Records. You can pre-order the record at NoSleepRecords.com.

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