The Leftovers - On the Move (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

The Leftovers

On the Move (2007)


Much like Spock, Superman and Jesus Christ, pop-punk won't stay dead. The genre's latest corpse slingers: The Leftovers and their album, On the Move. Delivering pop-punk in the vein of the Ergs!, Allister, MxPx and, ya know…the Ramones, On the Move recycles a ton of riffs and topics but still delivers everything all of the pinheads across America could possibly want.

Album opener "Run Real Fast" sets the record's game plan within 10 seconds of its start -- chugging, simple power chords, frenetic drums and bubblegum lyrics abound. Lyrically, the song consists of chasing tail, trying to avoid a beatdown and needing shock treatment, three very pop-punk sentiments. With an Elvis Costello-like croon, the Leftovers recall an encounter with a super cute female-type person with a "leather jacket and Weasel pin." The Screeching Weasel reference isn't just a plea for credibility, though, as Ben Weasel himself produced and sequenced On the Move. Peppy and fun, "Run Real Fast" is a worthy introduction to the Leftovers.

The same bubblegum surf rock fun continues on track two, "Dance with Me." It's a toss up as to whether "Run Real Fast" or "Dance with Me" is the more infectious track, but what's undeniable is that the two make for a sugarcoated one-two blast of pop-punk righteousness. "Dance with Me" keeps up the loser-in-love pose, innocent and desperate á la Buzzcocks. There are few giddier pleasures than when the band drops out before one final rousing chorus of "Dance with me, dance with me / And take my hand and walk with me, walk with me / I think you're gonna be the one baby, one baby."

There's 11 tracks following "Run Real Fast" and "Dance with Me," and they all follow the same pop-punk formula. Some are just under two minutes; some are just over. But they're all basically the same. As catchy as something like "Lose Your Head" can be, listeners could very easily confuse it with lesser tracks like "Camel" up until the chorus. This problem is basically the only offense one can charge On the Move with, that it is homogenous to a fault. Fuck Fall Out Boy all the same, though; much like their contemporaries the Ergs! and the Steinways, the Leftovers are bring back pop-punk for realsies.