Run Forever

Tiny Engines Music, 2012

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


There was a time, not too long ago, when it seemed like the San Francisco area was the epicenter of all things punk rock. In those days, you couldn't pick up a fanzine without reading about what latest and greatest band was coming out from the Bay Area, and in most cases, all the praise seemed warranted. These days, it's Pittsburgh that seems to spawn more than their share of gritty, sincere, and notable punk rock. While there haven’t been any breakout artists from The Steel City quite like Green Day in the Bay Area (Anti-Flag might be the closest?), there's several handfuls of dedicated, thriving outfits with much potential. The young trio Run Forever is one of those luminous outfits that is quickly catching the attention of those with an ear toward DIY, underground rock. While their roots come from a scene where basements shows and small venues are the norm, their new album my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 Settling contains charged guitar work and melodies giant enough to fill stadiums.

This quick album starts out with “Good Enough,” a track with their familiar crunchy guitars and crashing percussion intact. Frontman Anthony Heubel's boyish vocals bring The Smoking Popes to mind, and the mid-tempo, punk spirited indie rock may remind you of the The Menzinger's best moments. The following tune, “Sun Bruised,” starts out quicker but then retreats into a slower, moodier moment before picking up the pace again. The remaining tracks on Side A make great use of the trio's ability to fuse buzzing guitars with robust drumming, providing a melodic yet raw take on driving indie-rock meets sophisticated punk rock.

Side B offers some nice surprises. “Braddock Beach” leads off, a live, lo-fi acoustic track with a campfire vibe. This goes directly into one of the loudest moments here, “Postcards,” an arena rock anthem that reflects on growing up. “Close To The Sun” is the second subdued song on the album, though more full sounding that 'Braddock Beach,” and exemplifies Run Forever's ability to pen a memorable tune at any volume. Settling exits on “Forget,” the fastest track here and my vote for their strongest offering to date. The song is so grand, it parallels Against Me!'s finest work. 

Sure, the punk rock scene is as flooded as ever. You'll have to sift through a lot of mediocrity to find something really interesting these days. As someone who sifts through those piles of often barely tolerable music, let me save you some hours – find this, listen to this. You'll thank me later.

Rating: A-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2013 Tom Haugen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Tiny Engines Music, and is used for informational purposes only.