Happy Campers - Old School EP (Cover Artwork)

Happy Campers

Old School EP (2004)

Monkey Ass

I was at this shitty record store in my town going through the very small punk section in the used album bins (believe it or not I've struck gold there before) and I came across an EP titled Old School E.P. by a band called the Happy Campers. The name sounded fun, and it was cheap -- and so am I. So after a while of deep concentration along with some arithmetic, I found out that if I paid the $3 I would still be able to afford a pack of smokes on the walk back home, so I did so.

45 minutes of walking and about eight smokes later I found myself utterly shocked by what I was hearing blasting out of my computer speakers. "Just Like You" ripped through my ear canals and I immediately wanted to grab my board and go skate. It came blaring out and just about ripped my face off with its aggressive yet melodic punk attitude; I knew right then what I was in for and I couldn't wait. Though they only display a small portion of talent that this band possesses, the lyrics are impressive and insightful such as "many masks that you will try on the path to growing old / different faces, different skins to shed until you reach your goal / the mold will set, the clay will dry to the mask from which you hide / what matters most, intact remains the person trapped inside."

Although five of the six songs on this EP are very reminiscent to the `90s skatepunk (that I love so much) they do accomplish to slow things down on "Voices (Remix)" and remain pretty slow throughout the song; it manages to come off as a great pop-punk tune.

All in all, this EP is solid throughout -- the musicianship is tight, fast, aggressive and impressive. The lyrics range from political aspects to other thought-provoking and perceptive subjects. Not many people know of this band who hail from Las Vegas; however, they've managed to stay together for 10 long years and release some great music and these six songs are just a taste of what the Happy Campers are capable of.