Tsunami Bomb - Lullaby for the End of the World [Digital Single] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Tsunami Bomb

Lullaby for the End of the World [Digital Single] (2018)

self released

Having reformed in a modified version of their earliest, pre-recorded history lineup- Dom Davi on Guitar, Oobliette on keys, Gabe Lindeman on drums, as supplemented by guitarist Andy Pohl and new lead singer Kate Jacobi- Tsunami Bomb have taken measured steps back into the public eye. First it was a show here and there. Then, it was a short tour here, and quick east coast jaunt there. Having established their bonafides, there really was only one thing left to do- actually release some new music.

Well, it’s good for them that the new tracks pop. Firmly in their tactical approach mindset, both of the band’s new digital singles, “Lullaby for the End of the World” and “Naysayers” are built with specific intents. The former, which follows in the band’s tradition- pop-punkish bashing supplemented by a hint of darkness- is built around one of their hookiest choruses yet. They ride the gang chorus for the tune’s duration and it’s a good thing they do. In a way, they’re beating their chests and saying “here it is” and here it is, indeed. Cleverly, the tracks bends both to the positive and the negative. At once, as the band calls out “we’re running out of time!” it’s a gloomy forecast of the end of civilization as we know it. But, it’s also a call to arms, arguing that it’s not too late… yet. Tsunami Bomb might be rooted in the pop tradition, but heavy is the head that knows the wearies of the world, and it’s no small feat for them to slip these dark musings into a radio friendly format.

And let’s just address it: all eyes (or ears) are on Kate Jacobi. Can she fill the shoes of her predecessors? Can she counter the band’s already bombastic blast? Does she have what it takes? Yes. There you have it.

Just as “Lullabye” walks a dual line, Jacobi’s vocals flex both ways as well. She’s got the pipes for a sing-songy string and the richness to support that. But, she’s also able to shift into a sharp punk snap, which is what a band like this needs. Jacobi has an inherent confidence- a confidence that allows her to go a little raw at points- which is essential here. If the music is too pretty, it can get to be too much. Jacobi serves as an essential anchor, pulling the band up when the song requires it, and then slamming it back down when things get too nice.

Likewise, on the attack side of things, it’s nice to Oobliette back in the band. Perhaps, in days past, you could accuse Tsunami Bomb of laying too hard on the pop side of the pop-punk equation. A little gothy keyboards here, and little bit of true grit vocals there, and Oobliette makes sure that this doesn’t happen.

The flipside, “Naysayers,” serves as a vehicle for bassist Davi, guitarist Pohl, and drummer Lindeman. The track is a hard charger with the band approaching a near hardcore sprint. The band seems to argue that they’re coming out hotter than ever before and that they’re a little more crazed than before. That’s good. Frankly, this band works when things are just about to fly out of control- especially since there’s so much noise packed into the track. Jacobi fights against and booming, distanced chorus, giving the track an aggressive face while the band propels the whole thing along, rattling on the rails. They don’t actually lose control of course, but it sounds like they could, and in lies the rub.

Step one- play some good shows: check. Step two- make a tour work: check. Step three- put out some excellent recordings: check. There’s only one final hurdle, really- a full album. Does Tsunami Bomb 2018 have what it takes to put out an LP with juice as good as these two sips here? The track record should speak for itself.