Punk rock feels the 'Love'
from 'Handsome Devil'
By Mauro Alvarez
Daily Cougar Staff
Watching Blink-182 with opening act New
Found Glory in the Woodlands earlier this year, I found it easy to realize
that musicians in the punk rock
genre sound very similar.
Subjects vary from former loved ones to
oral sex -- and practically no subject matter.
Ken Schels/RCA Records
Punk rock rookies Handsome
Devil's debut album, Love and Kisses from the Underground is typical pop-punk.
The band is on fellow pop-punk band
Lit's "Dirty Martini" label.
How bands personify this rebellious adolescent
attitude, based on live performances and music videos, also determines
their fan loyalty and record
Handsome Devil's debut album Love and Kisses
from the Underground can easily disguise itself in the punk rock world
because it has all the
characteristics of punk -- crazy hair,
songs about girls, short songs and upbeat guitar riffs followed by choruses
that are easy to pick up.
The band is Danny Walker (lead vocals),
Darren Roberts (bass), Billie Stevens (guitar) and Keith Morgan (drums);
together they create this half-hour,
"Tie Me Up" reveals one component of punk
on the Devils' album, being about a significant other.
"Makin' Money" follows a Beastie Boys-esque
singing format in a song about work. This is also the group's first music
video. Stevens shows some solo
guitar skills with his strings in this
"Samurai" is a typical song. Its content
matter deals with, well, samurais. Samurais have nothing to do with punk,
but the fact that the song is about a
samurai just reveals that punk can be
about something with no relevance to anybody -- well, except maybe a samurai,
but I doubt there are going to be
any samurais in the punk music scene trying
to score Handsome Devil tickets. It is fun to picture it though.
"Sorry Charlie" got my attention. What
immediately hit my eardrums was the fact that if this guy's voice were
three notches more feminine, he would
sound exactly like No Doubt's Gwen Stefani.
Its chorus echoed, and I immediately pictured Stefani.
"Barbecue" is my favorite song because
the chorus is catchier then the rest of the songs: "I am not your perfect
model/ Mess things up should be my
motto." The song is about the guy who
always finds a way to screw things up. "Bring It On" ends the album with
the punk's moral of being a rebel and a
Love and Kisses from the Underground replicates
punk in all its characteristics. Both Blink and New Found Glory put on
a concert mixed with
humorous skits between songs.
Without the humor between each song provided
by the band, the show would have been less enjoyable. Should Handsome Devil
be able to replicate
this humor during live performances, I
think it can also make a name for itself in the Blink-dominated genre.