BY JOHN B. MOORE
Thanks to a fortuitous decision about a decade ago to combine the ska band Bob and The Sagets (which is quite possibly the worst… or best name I have ever heard for ska band) with the punk band Kos Mos, the Scranton boys that make up The Menzingers put themselves on the path to creating one of the best pop punk albums 2014 has heard yet. Alas, we will never know what could have become of Bob and The Sagets.
The Menzingers, having since relocated to Philadelphia, have shown plenty of promise over their past three releases, but those earlier efforts always had a mix of the so-so with the great. It’s the dozen songs that make up Rented World where the band has finally put together their most consistent collection yet; songs that are both tight and fun, merging punk influences like Anti-Flag and Hot Water Music, with seemingly more indie rock fare like The Smiths, a mix that complement each other well.
The album stretches from the raucous – tracks like “I Don’t Wanna Be An Asshole Anymore” or “The Talk” – to the more introspective and restrained – like the brilliant ‘In Remission,” dripping with emotion (but most definitely not emo, no matter how hard the early 20-somethings and online media are trying to force an emo revival).
Not flawless, but damn it’s still a fine effort from beginning to end.
DOWNLOAD: “I Don’t Wanna Be An Asshole Anymore,” “Transient Love” and ‘In Remission”