For Bayside fans, it has been a long wait for new material since the New York based quartet dropped their 2011 LP Killing Time. But now Anthony, Nick, Jack and Chris have stepped up and released Cult, their sixth full length studio album.
After their long relationship with Victory Records, releasing four albums before moving to Wind Up Records to release Killing Time, the band have again moved in order to release Cult under the Hopeless Records family.
Cult sets itself apart from their previous releases by having songs that are different than the band’s usual sound, but still produces the tone that shows how this is unmistakably a Bayside album. For instance, the opening track “Big Cheese” begins with a steady floor tom and snare beat, and then a heavy guitar riff- which would not sound too out of place on a Misfits album- until Anthony’s distinctive voice brings it all together in that classic Bayside style that we have all come to know and love with the heavy tone clashing with the message of the lyrics of the desire to be loved and remembered.
The band released two lyric videos during the lead up to the release of the album, the second of which is the bands second track, “Time Has Come,” which is the polar opposite of the first track, which lays down the tone of a classic pop punk song with its faint intro and upbeat verse about being noticed before you are gone.
The album is filled with everything you would expect from Bayside, showing they don’t plan on changing their unpredictable style anytime soon. Each track does not disappoint with Raneri’s trademark voice and lyrical style, along with the extremely intricate guitar work from O’Shea, who is still showing he is the undefeated king of pop-punk guitarists (especially the solo on “Pigsty” which feels like a throwback to his solo on “The Walking Wounded” from the album of the same name).
The lyrics on this album, again, stay true to Bayside’s tried and trusted style of stories of struggling relationships (honestly one of the best bands of post-breakup music) with songs like “Pigsty” and “You’re No Match.” As well as others about finding your place and sticking true to your ways, disagreeing with the moral views of the world and the need to feel safe.
This album is possibly their finest since 2007’s Walking Wounded. Although it may require a few listens before it is fully appreciated, it is everything we wanted from this record and more.
Cult is in stores on the 18th of February and Bayside are on tour in the United States with Four Year Strong, Mixtapes and Daylight throughout March, and in the UK and Europe in support of Alkaline Trio through April and May.