punkish sounding
a little too much for me, the included clip excluded
nothing reached a like
maybe CMB material, not sure
haven't figured her out yet

Grade - 1.3

released Jan 25th, 2011

from the album - When It Dies - 1.5


from all music


Kansas City's Get Up Kids play melodic, pop-inflected emo similar to the Promise Ring and Braid, with whom the band released a split single in 1998. The influential group -- vocalist/guitarist Matthew Pryor, guitarist/vocalist Jim Suptic, bassist Robert Pope, and drummer Ryan Pope (Robert's younger brother, who replaced Nathan Shay early on) -- debuted in 1996 with a slew of 7"s, including Shorty on the Huey Proudhon label and All Stars on Doghouse Records. Both the Woodson EP and their debut full-length, Four Minute Mile, the latter recorded with Shellac's Bob Weston, were released in 1997. The well-received albums started a growing buzz around the indie rock scene, even causing the bandmembers to field offers from major labels, which they ultimately turned down. In 1998, the Get Up Kids toured extensively with bands like the Promise Ring and Jimmy Eat World and released more singles, including "I'm a Loner, Dottie, a Rebel," which also appeared on their classic 1999 album, Something to Write Home About. Released through Heroes & Villains/Vagrant, Something to Write Home About featured newly added keyboardist James Dewees and focused the scrappy energy of their promising debut into a visceral and intelligent collection of highly introspective and melodic songs that would go on to influence countless bands; the album garnered high critical and fan praise and made the Get Up Kids heroes of the emocore scene.

The band resurfaced two years later, re-releasing some of its early works as the album Eudora and hitting the road with Green Day, Hot Rod Circuit, and Weezer along the way. It wasn't until 2002 that a new album, On a Wire, surfaced, featuring more sparsely arranged and somber songs different than the stirring emo-pop of before. The relatively more upbeat Guilt Show, the band's fifth album and third effort with producer Ed Rose, appeared in spring 2004. The concert album Live @ the Granada Theater surfaced a year later, marking the band's tenth anniversary. But 2005 also marked their presumed final set of tour dates, as the guys announced around the same time that they would be calling it quits -- the apparent last Get Up Kids date was held at their hometown's Uptown Theater on July 2, 2005. The bandmembers continued on with various individual projects, including Pryor with the New Amsterdams and his kids' music project, the Terrible Twos; Dewees with Reggie and the Full Effect; Suptic with his own Blackpool Lights; and the Pope brothers with Koufax. However, the group reunited in 2009 to celebrate the tenth anniversary of Something to Write Home About with a deluxe reissue and a tour. Not wanting to waste an opportunity, they wrote an album's worth of new material that was released as a series of EPs during 2010. The first, Simple Science, arrived in April and promptly reached the Billboard charts, proving that the band still had a devoted audience. After the release of Simple Science, the band scrapped their three EP plan, instead combining the other songs with even more new material and releasing it as a full length album. The result was their fifth full-length, There Are Rules, which the band self-released through their own Quality Hill label.

Album Review

For most bands, doing a reunion tour isn't so daunting task -- get the bandmates together, run through a few of the old songs, and before you know it, momentum and muscle memory take over and they sound something like they did back in the day. It's when said reunited band heads into the recording studio that things get tricky; writing and recording new stuff that stands up to the standards of your established canon is rarely simple, especially while you're trying to move past the reasons you called it quits. A mere five years after breaking up, the Get Up Kids ended up reuniting to celebrate the tenth anniversary of their landmark sophomore album Something to Write Home About, and the shows went well enough that the band began writing new songs and decided to make a new album. Thankfully, on There Are Rules, the Get Up Kids beat the odds and deliver an album that lives up to their legend -- if they haven't come up with another touchstone like Something to Write Home About that recalls the glory days before emo became an insult -- they still sound like a smart, focused, wiry rock band whose attack is noticeably harder and more aggressive than on 2004's Guilt Show. James Dewees' keyboards play a bigger role in the arrangements on There Are Rules than they usually did in the past, but his clean, often jagged electronic tones resonate with Matthew Pryor and Jim Suptic's guitars, and with the addition of the admirably tight rhythm section of bassist Robert Pope and drummer Ryan Pope, it coheres into music that urges the GUKs' sound into a place that's very much their own, and doesn't simply rehash what they've done in the past. Lyrically, Pryor still seems to be wavering back and forth between rage and angst, but he sounds like a more mature, riled-up version of the guy from his earlier work, which is to say these songs show the same balance of consistency and adventure as the performances. And the production by frequent studio partner Ed Rose adds washes of electronic atmosphere without blurring the group's forward momentum. On There Are Rules, the Get Up Kids never sound like they're trying to relearn how to do what they do: they manage the deceptively difficult trick of evolving without turning into something else, and they've made a powerful, engaging album that's worthy of their legacy.

Track Listing

1 Tithe Get Up Kids 3:39
2 Regent's Court Get Up Kids 2:06
3 Shatter Your Lungs Get Up Kids 2:49
4 Automatic Get Up Kids 2:55
5 Pararelevant Get Up Kids 3:37
6 Rally 'Round the Fool Get Up Kids 5:16
7 Better Lie Get Up Kids 4:18
8 Keith Case Get Up Kids 4:05
9 The Widow Paris Get Up Kids 3:37
10 Birmingham Get Up Kids 2:36
11 When It Dies Get Up Kids 4:04
12 Rememorable Get Up Kids 2:59