Stephen Egerton - The Seven Degrees of Stephen Egerton (Cover Artwork)

Stephen Egerton

The Seven Degrees of Stephen Egerton (2010)

Paper + Plastick

Stephen Egerton is a man of many talents. In addition to being the guitarist for legendary bands ALL and the Descendents, he is a skilled producer, and judging from this album, a multi-talented musician.

Egerton recorded all the music (drums, bass, guitar) for this album, and asked some of his friends and favorite vocalists to write and sing the vocals on each song. With contributions from Dan Andriano (Alkaline Trio), Tim McIlrath (Rise Against), Chris Demakes (Less than Jake), and Joey Cape (Lagwagon) as well as current/former bandmates Chad Price, Scott Reynolds and Milo Aukerman (among others), this album speaks to Egerton's longevity in the punk rock world.

With ALL seemingly in a state of perpetual hiatus, this is probably the closest thing we will get to a new album from them. Hell, "Funny Face," featuring Chad Price, and "Sunny Disposition," featuring Scott Reynolds, would not be out of place on Problematic or Allroy's Revenge, and serve as two of the highlights of the album. Another highlight is "She's Got Everything," featuring Milo from the Descendents. This track was penned entirely by Egerton and could easily fit into the Descendents catalog with a Karl Alvarez-like bassline and Egerton imitating Bill Stevenson's surf punk drumming style. Contributions by John Moreland, Frank Daly (Big Drill Car), Mike Herrera (MxPx) and Mark Vecchiarelli (Shades Apart) are other strong tracks on the album that never seem to let up. Egerton even does his best Less Than Jake impression with "Print on Paper." With lyrics penned by Vinnie, backup vocals from Roger and lead vocals by Chris (all from LTJ), this track could almost be a Less Than Jake B-side.

It is hard not to draw comparisons between Stephen Egerton's debut solo album and his previous work in ALL and the Descendents. He has, after all, been playing in those two bands for nearly 20 years at this point. The changing lineup of singers is never really jarring, and transitions pretty smoothly from one track to another. Almost all of the songs are solid pop-punk gems, with the only song I find myself skipping being "When They Roam" featuring Joey Cape.

The Seven Degrees of Stephen Egerton is a very solid debut solo outing from Egerton that can certainly hold its own among Egerton's massively influential back catalog of music.