Mikey Erg - Bon Voyage [EP] (Cover Artwork)

Mikey Erg

Bon Voyage [EP] (2020)

Stardumb Records

Following 2019’s Waxbuilt Castles, Mikey Erg has returned with a 4-song EP that is a far cry from last year’s full length. With this 7-inch, he has returned to his pop-punk roots and the reasons he got into punk in the first place. In Mikey’s words, this is “love letter to pop punk.”

The record kicks off with “Bon Voyage”, a mid-tempo burst of heavy guitars and catchy vocals. And while the song lacks any semblance of chorus, that doesn’t necessarily mean it lacks melody. Right from the start, Mikey’s vocals hook the listener with “I just can’t get you outta my mind, you show up in my dreams.” And with a little help from Lydia Loveless on background vocals, this song is very reminiscent of his earlier work with The Ergs!

“The New Departure Blues” seems to follow track 1, not just in sequential order, but also thematic order. After reluctantly ending a relationship, it seems as if the narrator is moving through the various stages and is now ready to be alone. As he sings over and over, “I said the wrong things for a long time today”, it appears that the character is assuming some of the blame. The theme of this song fits very well with the Pinkerton-era Weezer sound, though it’s not clear if this was intentional.

The flipside shifts gears slightly on “Colleen”, a faster tempo song that seems to evoke some of the energy from Mikey’s live sets. Over and over, he sings “take a listen to the words sometime, and then you’ll know that you’re not alone here.” This message is a welcomed contradiction to some of the themes on Side A. While everyone can relate to the first 2 tracks, it’s nice to follow that up with a message of hope and empathy.

Side B closes with a cover, as an homage to the various pop punk 7-inches that typically contained at least 1 cover song. This version of “Mother Nature’s Song” by the Beatles strays far from the original, but it is well done and it is a welcomed addition to the EP.

Mikey’s experience shines through on this record, primarily through his pop punk roots. While many people seemed to enjoy his previous solo work, this 7-inch will likely offer a welcomed return for his fans.