This badass bunch of melodic punk rock ladies have been releasing infectious 7” records for a couple years that just play too damn quickly. At three to four songs apiece, Bad Cop Bad Cop always left me yearning for more. With a poppy range of sopranos, they trade off vocal duties often—and when they bring it altogether, it’s a riotous party. Fat Wreck label owner, Fat Mike (NOFX) once likened them to a female Bad Religion with their three part harmonies. This strength is self-realized on “Like, Seriously?” as guitarist Stacey Dee snarls, “You’re gonna worship our 3-part harmonies. No we’re not selling sex, but we’ll make your eardrums wet! It’s the best you’re gonna get.”
Not Sorry is their first (long-awaited) full length and continues their Fat Wreck streak of having guitarist Jennie Cotterill paint up fun, kitschy, Glenn-Barr-esque oddities. This cover wins a championship belt with a stern, female, Mexican wrestler and speckled Vegas-style hand-lettering. This campy illustration sums up the vivacious power-slam you’ll need to prepare your neck for. So it’s totally cool to judge a record by its cover.
“Nightmare” tone checks in to introduce the 13 tracks of Not Sorry. The snare-rich track plays in a classic vein of SoCal pop punk, tweaking things with charming acapellas which inspire me to slick my hair up in an Elvis pompadour pile. I could definitely see the King rushing the stage to croon along with them if he wasn’t already dead. And while the harmonized “oohs” and “ahhs” are reminiscent to the professors of Bad Religion, but stray from doom and gloom content. Cotterill recently mentioned in New Noise Magazine that she prefers “focusing on the positive when writing, since there’s no shortage of misery in today’s music.” Even when their songs dip into heartache and the hard luck of life, the lyrics suggest embracing the ebb and flow of life … and title lightens it further: “Joey Lawrence.” Whoa!
“I’m Alright” introduces a brief chord section of upstrokes and end ultimately in ringing out distortion. While it reflects the tone of the discord lyrically, it feels disparate amongst its neighborhood of tracks. But I suppose every band needs a paced down track to catch their breath during a live set. The album dashes by like a vacation—over sooner than you’d like. Bad Cop Bad Cop has made an irresistible debut EP here that will put you in a chokehold.
BAD COP BAD COP, NOFX, LAGWAGON, STRUNG OUT, + MORE @ FAT WRECK CHORDS 25 YEAR ANNIVERSARY. WED 8.12. HOUSE OF BLUES, 15 LANSDOWNE ST., BOSTON. 2PM/ALL AGES/$44.50. HOUSEOFBLUES.COM