Night Surf are a group of New York punk rockers that were introduced into the world back in 2017 with their debut EP “Blasted”, as a follow up this year they’re releasing another EP titled “Enemies”. According to the band’s bio on Spotify they’re taking a different approach and looking at the darker side of pop-punk.
This statement isn’t untrue in any facet, I can certainly agree that it’s a darker sound for what is usually quite a chipper genre, however it does feel to me personally like it’s less of a darker pop punk and more pop punk that leans more into the punk aspect, this is definitely aided by the punk-style yelling of the vocals.
We begin with Reanimate, a song that bursts out of the cage with a rebellious, in-your-face kind of punk sound. Fast drums, sketchy, thrashy guitars and chanted vocals yelling out, however I may have to eat my words as there is a fair presence of pop to their punk, when the instrumentals calm down and the vocals sing a little quieter you can definitely sense some pop-punk in there.
Sleight of Hand begins very similarly to the last song what with the thrashy punk attitude, however the only difference with this song is that it’s more or less the same from start to finish, the first song showcased a greater sense of variety in that it toned down for a little bit and had some light and dark tones to it, although if I’m being honest, toning things down isn’t very punk is it?
Next up is the song Watersnake and in this song is where the pop-punk elements of the band really get to shine. The vocals have gone back to that angsty, higher-pitched vocal style and the instrumentals are much less thrashing, instead they’re more melodic and comprised of more easily accessible riffs and tunes.
Enemies is the last song on the four-track album and it’s at this point that you realize there’s an interesting tone shift in the entirety of the album. The first two songs are punk, and the latter two are pop, but listening to the whole thing you get to see the transition. This song is just a catchy and enjoyable pop punk song and that’s really all there is to it.
The album as a whole is genuinely enjoyable, both from the punk and pop punk perspectives. I think the band shines with how they’ve decided to embrace both genres that came together to create pop-punk. I think anyone who is a fan of either genres will take interest in Night Surf and I hope to see what they do with the prospect of a full album.