The Get Up Kids - Simple Science (Cover Artwork)

The Get Up Kids

Simple Science (2010)


A lot has happened to the members of the Get Up Kids since the final chords rang out in Kansas City at the band's "final" show in 2005. Matt Pryor continued releasing albums with the New Amsterdams, as well as a solo album (2008's Confidence Man) and two children's albums under the Terrible Twos moniker. James Dewees did touring keyboardist stints with both New Found Glory and My Chemical Romance, hit rehab, played drums in MCR side project Leathermouth and released the slightly disappointing but arguably more focused Reggie and the Full Effect album, Last Stop: Crappy Town. Bassist Rob Pope joined indie rock sensations Spoon, as well as taking over Black Lodge Recording studio with his brother (and GUK drummer) Ryan Pope and producer Ed Rose. Jim Suptic came out of the gate strong with his Blackpool Lights project, but ended up hocking galvanized nails at Home Depot towards the end of the decade--not exactly the future you'd hope would befall the man who sang such anthems as "Ten Minutes" and "Forgive and Forget." Needless to say, it was a strange few years for the Kansas City quintet.

The break-up didn't take, however, as 2008 finally saw their return to stage and studio, cranking out an album's worth of new material, which will be released as three EPs over the course of this year. The band has boasted that "almost no computer technology was used" in the recording of Simple Science (and its eventual followups), and it shines through in the analog aesthetic of the record. Effects are present particularly in the bass and vocals, but it never detracts from the refreshingly unpolished, almost murky, band-in-a-big-room sound. The keyboards provide more atmospheric than lead melody this time around, the rhythm section being the real standout of the EP. Their gritty, distorted bass and big roomy drums make "Keith Case" the record's highlight. Originally debuted on 2009's Daytrotter sessions, "Your Pretty Petty Things" returns as the EP's opener, complete with the eerie William S. Burroughs "Does it seem to be persisting?" sample. The fourth and final song is "How You're Bound," a subtle, drum machine-led song, which recalls Guilt Show's "Is There a Way Out."

So, while different and hard to compare to the rest of their catalogue, the Simple Science EP is a solid progression from their Guilt Show-era material, and leaves an appetite for the remaining parts of the proposed trilogy and hopefully much more to come from the reunited Get Up Kids.