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Album Review

Taking a cue from fellow alternative pop bands like Everclear, Unwritten Law beefs up its production and plays with its trademark sound on Elva. The band is moving farther away from the anemic punk rock that made it a critical bull's-eye in the '90s, and the newer pop direction fits Unwritten Law's abilities perfectly. The only real issue with the album is the generic way the band approaches most of the rock songs. Slower, more weighty songs like "Seein' Red" get the maximum treatment because of their knack for building to a strong chorus. But the rockers tend to start with all guns blazing, just to fizzle out after a few verses. There are obvious exceptions, especially the excellent "Mean Girl," which packs a powerful punch around the chorus, and "Nick & Phil" stays interesting due to the raging vocals contrasting with the syrupy background vocals. But then there are songs like "Rescue Me," which does not maintain energy because of the overly smooth chorus that follows the Jawbox-esque verses. Still, to see Unwritten Law attempting new things is always comforting, especially when the band is good at them. From the reggae-tinged "How You Feel" to the Soul Asylum country-rock of "Rest of My Life," there is a lot here that branches out from the group's previous sound, and it is this variety and catchiness that makes this a recommendation for fans of alternative pop bands.

Customer Reviews

Unwritten Law - Awesome Band

Not as raw as their earlier albums but is still an awesome album. Scott Russo's vocals are awesome, and the album bangs along from one track to the next. Forget your mainstream poppy punk trash and buy this album.

unwritten law

im not rating this album, i just wanna ask one question... WHERE'S F.I.G.H.T SONG?

buy this!

the way pop punk should sound, none of this good charlotte/simple plan crap, these guys are genuine. the drums on 'blame it on me' almost cause me to crash when driving, top effort!

Biography

Formed: 1990 in California

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

More of a power pop band than anything else, though they're nestled in Southern California's skate/snowboard punk scene, Unwritten Law formed early in the 1990s, with drummer Wade Youman the only holdover from the band's early days. The group eventually coalesced around vocalist...
Full bio
Elva, Unwritten Law
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