Drive, Kid Enjoy Being Review

Drive, kid album cover
There are few things more classic than pure pop punk and it’s always exhilarating to see new talent emerge in this genre and completely embrace it’s spirit and freedom. Local Monmouth County based pop punk band Drive, Kid have given us their take on the genre with their latest LP Enjoy Being which over it’s 11 tracks celebrates their early 2000’s punk and alternative influences with catchy hooks and guitar parts, biting yet vulnerable lyrics and lots of energy and momentum as well. Much of the LP represents the band’s vibrant and personal sound as evidenced by stand-outs such as “December 11th” which has a grand and soaring sound and lyrics that are powerfully performed and relatable. In terms of production and unity, the band display strong chemistry and display a diversity of sound throughout, the LP contains elements of ambient, hip-hop and folk at various points and there’s an even ratio of heavier and slower selections sequenced seamlessly together. What allows Enjoy Being to remain a compelling listen is the sheer enthusiasm in the performances, when the band performs a number called “Shitkicker” it’s just as visceral and hard-hitting as you’d expect and track “Burn Book” demonstrates their tightness as a unit while still delivering catchy hooks and establishing their own style.
Much of Enjoy Being is a cohesive listen with each track building off the other and containing an almost cinematic quality at times. On track “Hey October” the band experiment with grander more epic style arrangements and displaying a conceptual ambition in the process. This sense of go for broke and pure vitality is what makes Enjoy Being an exciting listen and Drive, Kid a promising band. Overall Enjoy Being emerges as a polished, briskly paced and hugely enjoyable listen with strong songwriting and solid performances. Most importantly it’s fast, loud and heartfelt as my punk pop. Should be, a drive well worth taking indeed.
Songs to Spin: “Hey October”, “December 11th”, “Burn Book”, “Shitkicker”, “As Life is to Nature”



Song of The Week: Understand by Rachel Ana Dobken

Communication is an important part of our every-day lives and we all want to be understood somehow someway. This topic is a fodder for many artists and musicians and Asbury Park-based singer/songwriter Rachel Ana Dobken mines this subject matter gracefully in her sultry and atmospheric new single “understand” off her upcoming LP When It Happens To You. The song serves as a strong case for Dobken’s understated yet purposeful vocal performance which establishes mood and tone with confidence. Musically the track appears simple with hazy guitars and moody organ but the more listens you give it, the more the track’s ambiance washes over you and reveals it’s layers. Lyrically “Understand” highlights perspective and a desire to know where one is coming from, this could be heavy-handed subject matter but once again Dobken’s vulnerability and insightful writing anchor the track giving it an emotional resonance.
As a single, it’s pacing is light and breezy but manages to convey a good deal of musical substance in it’s runtime. The instrumentation including a guest harmonica appearance from famed rock photographer and artist Danny Clinch organically connect into one another and create a cohesive soundscape. It’s a well-balanced piece of production that allows it’s songwriter room to breathe while also demonstrating sonic nuance and style. The end result is an engaging and focused track that represents Dobken’s musical and lyrical strengths and effectively sets the mood for her upcoming release. If this first single is any indication of what the future holds, it won’t be too hard to understand Ms. Dobken at all.
*Rachel Ana Dobken will be performing at Asbury Lanes 9/8 with The Mercury Brothers, you can listen to her song via Relix


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