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Springfield natives The Graduate release new song

October 15, 2009

It’s been a bit rough lately for Springfield, Ill. pop-punk outfit The Graduate. After their label (Icon) ceased to exist the band was forced to self-produce the follow-up to 2007’s Anhedonia.

The band took their money and went back the recording studio they recorded at in Baltimore, Md. with engineer Brian McTernan. In their time there the band posted a few videos on YouTube, but for the most part has not released any new material in the past two years.

That is, until Monday evening when the five-piece posted a little nugget on as a part of their Unsigned Showcase.

The song, entitled “Don’t Die Digging,” picks up almost exactly where they left off. It kicks off with quick, pulsating drums and is quickly met by Corey Warning’s unique, piercing vocals.

Musically this song is similar to “Anhedonia” or “The Formula:” guitar dripping with delay and a sweeping synthesizer met in the chorus by overdriven power-chords. The gang vocals seem a bit cheesy, but surely it’s a prerequisite for pop-punk bands to do it at least once per album.

Lyrically this song does not progress much beyond what was evident in Anhedonia, however, for the genre that this band is dabbling in, it’s fine.

Warning yells about being “out of control” and an apparent disregard for whatever “they” care about. Overall, the lyrics leave something to be desired. However, on that same note there is still a progression that can be seen from their earlier songs like “Justified,” which express a sense of teenage sexual angst.

Though the song does not explore new depths for the band, it isn’t the worst music I’ve ever heard either. I feel as though this review is coming off a bit harsh on The Graduate, but what they do is done pretty well. This brand of synthesized, sugary pop-punk is enjoyable, and certainly good for a jolt of energy.

The most important thing about this song about this song is that there is definitely an audience.

The Graduate make intricate pop-punk and they do it better than most bands on mediocre labels today. I hope that a label takes interest in their work based upon this sample, and gives them a chance to distribute their music beyond their own means.

Take a listen to “Don’t Die Digging,” and judge for yourself.

The Graduate – “Don’t Die Digging”

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