The Hung Ups - Sweet Tooth (Cover Artwork)

The Hung Ups

Sweet Tooth (2019)


The Hung Ups are a three-piece out of Salt Lake City with a real affinity for pop-punk pulled through a Ramones/bubblegum blender. It’s pretty good stuff, and on Sweet Tooth, done with just enough angst to keep the cavities away.

Sweet Tooth is their most recent 4-song ep and it offers up a quick take on catchy quick punk rock. At their heart, they seem to worship at the altar of bands that worshipped at the altar of the Ramones. Memorable guitar leads a-la Screeching Weasel pop up on “Halloween Show” and “Basement Dweller” and sort of tuneful and snotty vocals sing songs about girls and longing.

My favorites of Sweet Tooth come at the start and end. “Halloween Show” brings an instantly hummable guitar lead at the start and comes at you with a fast and hooky rhythm. The simplicity in the lyrics is endearing. Lines like “she grabbed my hand / and we watched the band / and I forgot I felt all alone” and “I was kinda bored / but it was better than being alone” are nothing complicated or deep, but fit the music well. Later, “Basement Dweller” closes with a similar formula. Fantastic guitar lead introduction that sounds ripped from My Brain Hurts goes into an upbeat hookfest with more perfectly imperfect vocals and lots of guitar leads. And lyrically, it goes straight to optimism with lines like “We're going out tonight / and she doesn't care / that I borrowed my parents car / and that I sleep in their basement” and the lovely and self-deprecating “she's so in love with me / and I don't know why”.

The in-between songs on Sweet Tooth are solid, too. Both are upbeat corkers that move along at a speedy pace, singing about girls (both wanting a girl on “I’ll Never Be Gone” and being repulsive to a girl on “Pessimist”). Catchy in their own right, just a bit less memorable than the other two.

It’s been done before, but on Sweet Tooth, The Hung Ups do it well. I’ll be coming back to this.