Polar Bear Club “Death Chorus”

Jimmy Pyles

New York five-piece post-hardcore pop-punk band Polar Bear Club dropped its fourth album “Death Chorus” this week.

“Death Chorus” is very different from its past albums and the band drifted further away from its post-hardcore base, towards a predominantly pop-punk sound with an emphasis on pop.  The album lacks the gritty tone that made it stand out above other post-hardcore artists.

Just from the first track on the album, “Blood Balloon,” you can tell that vocalist Jimmy Stadt’s voice is not the same as any of the previous albums and sounds more like every other pop-punk band.

Though it’s different, “Blood Balloon” is a d*mn good way to kick off a record full of energy and good instrumentals, which is one of the few good things about the album.

“WLWYCD” is the closest track to previous albums but after a few listens, I can hear the evolution the band is taking. I can hear glimpses of the old and the new Polar Bear Club. The build up in the intro adds a much-needed dynamic that wasn’t as present as much in the past, and the vocal depth makes it one of the best songs on the album.

With the grit missing, its charisma is alive in its driving choruses and punchy riffs in tracks like “When We Were College Kids,” “WLWYCD” and “Graph Paper Glory Days.”

“Death Chorus” would be a good album if I didn’t know that this was a Polar Bear Club record. Since I do, it falls in line with every other pop-punk record currently on the market.