Suspect Parts - You Know I Can't Say No (Cover Artwork)

Suspect Parts

You Know I Can't Say No (2019)

Dirt Cult Records

Suspect Parts are a power pop band with some serious pedigree. Amongst others, Justin Maurer has spent time in Clorox Girls, Red Dons, and L.A. Drugz while James Sullivan has been playing with the excellent More Kicks. On You Know I Can’t Say No, Suspect Parts show off those pop instincts.

The standout song on this three-song release is the title track. “You Know I Can’t Say No” is a fantastic and heart wrenching up-tempo power pop number. It does this muted verse thing before breaking into a catchy and full-bodied chorus, working a blasted stomping bridge into the mix for good measure. It’s pure gold; catchy hooks, crunchy guitars, and a busy and melodic bass.

The other couple songs on Can’t Say No are cool-to-okay, too. “Song for Sadie” plays around with some more busy bass that gets punctuated with stuttered guitar stabs. Again, there’s some great melodic guitar and some tough lyrics about seeing the greatest girl hurting and helping the pain go away. After a quick break around two minutes, the band comes back in, reassuring the girl “oh, it’s gonna be alright, tonight”. It’s a great song. Closing cover “Hundsgemein” is okay, but easily my least favorite of the bunch. It’s a bit slower, sort of plodding, but holds pretty true to the original (which I hadn’t heard before hearing this and seeking it out). Drums and bass drive the song as guitars weave around and chirp in the background. It kind of sounds like the Fall to me, but seems stylistically different from the rest of what’s going on and in that way, pretty much out of place.

You Know I Can’t Say No is mostly a winner. The two great power pop songs will stick with you and keep you replaying them over and over again. And while the more post-punk vibe of the closing cover seems out of place, it’s not so egregious to drive anyone away. Just a weird little detour at the end. Listen to this and be happy to welcome Suspect Parts into your life.