Late Nite Wars - Late Nite Wars (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Late Nite Wars

Late Nite Wars (2008)


Except for the purposely erroneous spelling error in their name, Late Nite Wars actually encompass everything right about the current trend of hardcore kids playing pop-punk. There's no overwrought lyrics here; no horror movie growls; no keyboards (save for a barely audible organ on closer "The Big Hurt"); no stupid, stupid mosh parts -- just talented songwriting, plenty of double-time moments, tasteful gang vocals, great structure and super fun, energetic pop-punk.

If there's a comparison to be had, it's actually to Boys Night Out circa Make Yourself Sick -- minus the screaming, darker overtones and serial killer fetish, of course. Mind you, it's mostly in the guitar tone and the unmistakable similarity in Kevin Quinn's voice to a young but less whiny Connor Lovat-Fraser; between the opening riffs and the delivery of a certain line ("When we hit the streets, we hit the streets by storm!"), it's especially prevalent in "The Cool Thing to Do." Otherwise, one might be prone to draw parallels to Set Your Goals (see the gang shout and "whoa-oh"-laden "The Big Hurt") or maybe a more upbeat Movielife.

Whether it's a passing coincidence or not doesn't really matter, though the closing metaphor in "Summer Sanders (Can Figure Me Out)" sure makes BNO seem like an influence ("at the bottles [sic] end, or in a best friend, trying to find a killer of what won't die").

Late Nite Wars is the best pop-punk debut EP I've heard since Transit and the Humanoids dropped bombs on us in 2007. With the Merrimack Valley quintet having already recorded some new material, I'm damn excited to hear what's next -- besides that one pretty awesome new song on their MySpace page, I guess.

Dragon the Anchor
Summer Sanders (Can Figure Me Out)
The Cool Thing to Do