Today is the official release date for the Dad Brains’ EP album. When I first heard the name a few months ago, I thought it was a clever Bad Brains cover band with a bunch of old dudes. I was totally wrong.
Dad Brains is a four-piece dadcore band from Oxnard/Ventura, California. Made up of ex-members of No Motiv, The MIssing 23rd, Creep Division, and the F-ing Wrath, these now-dads are back at it with the greatest project ever. I couldn’t imagine a better vocalist for this project than Pat Pedraza. He sings with such feeling and charisma. Not to mention the honest, sleep-deprived, Paw-Patrol-playing-on-a-loop agony which Pat conveys that only parents can truly empathize with. The songs are legitimate punk songs but are so spot on lyrically for any parent out there. They’ve really zeroed in on a group of people who will never “grow out” of punk but have had a shift in priorities.
The song “Baby Jail” sums up every parent in the first year or so of their offspring’s life. ‘I’m finally outside to breathe the fresh air / But then I get a text and read it with a stare / The baby’s kind of fussy can you come back in? / I need to take a shower…/ I feel like I’m in Baby Jail’. That is literally your life as a new parent. Showers… you don’t realize how much you enjoy them until the first time you shower with the curtain half open, while your mini-me fusses in the bouncy seat in the middle of the bathroom floor… Because if you dare try to shower when they nap, you know they will immediately wake up screaming as soon as that water hits your body.
Instrumentally, this band perfectly captures the West Coast punk sound. John Crerar attacks the drums with a well-executed, heavy rhythm, switching up the tempo effortlessly between the highs and lows of each track. He brings a depth that you don’t find with a lot of drummers and it sets the tone for the rest of the band. Craig Kasamis on bass gives more than just that flat, rhythmic sound you’re used to hearing from a lot of bassists. His punchy, bold sound compliments Matt Kash’s talents on guitar nicely. Matt completely rounds out the non-vocal harmonies of this band. His play style has a warm familiarity to it while still bringing that loud, dirty, overdriven sound that we love about punk music. The songs are catchy and will have you singing along on your first listen.
Even though in my head I’m still 25, my government age is rounding 40 years old. Everyone that I listened to growing up is about 10 years my senior. But age doesn’t matter, we are still punks and skins. We’ve just grown up… we’ve evolved. We’re now gainfully employed, many settled in our careers. We are in long-term, committed relationships and many of us are responsible for raising tiny humans of our own.
Yes, we are parents but we enjoy the same things that we did in our youth… only now we do them in a perpetual state of exhaustion. With our pride and joy kickin’ it in the stroller as we navigate through uncharted emotions, diaper changes, playdates, parent-teacher conferences all while trying to stick to a 9 pm bedtime.
If this is something that you can relate to, and you’re looking for something fun to listen to that’s just different than the rest of punk right now, give Dad Brains a listen. You will not be disappointed!
- Baby Jail
- Quiet Time
- I’m Emo
- I’m Old