Man Overboard - Real Talk
Release Date: July 20, 2010
Record Label: Run for Cover
Since the first time I entered this website people were talking about Man Overboard. Of all the comments here they were almost always praised as one of the best new pop-punk bands.
Despite all this praise I never felt an urge to pick up one of their releases and listen to them. They were always in the bottom of my list for some unknown reason. All of that changed when, a couple of weeks ago, I decided to pick up Dahlia EP that was up for free on their website. It wasn't a brilliant effort, but "Montrose" really stood out as a strong, well done, pop-punk track.
After the news that the band decided to release their debut album one month earlier it felt like the perfect time do give Man Overboard a second chance and now all this hype seems deserved. Real Talk is an album packed with the best pop-punk you can find in 2010. It starts with a bang and it never stops, proving that pop-punk is alive and well.
"Real Talk" sets the mood and itís followed by a succession of perfectly timed pop-punk gems. The transitions between tracks really highlight the value of the songs as a whole, and it feels like you are listening to a continuation of the previous track. Itís all very natural, organic. "Fantasy Girl" is the first single of the album and it really represents the feeling of it. Itís fast, honest and itís sung in a very familiar way that never gets old. Itís hard to choose highlights in Real Talk but one of the standouts is definitely "Fantasy Girl". Another memorable moment of the album is the bridge of "Parting Gift", similar to the one of "Coffee Shop Soundtrack" by ATL, which was made for full crowd sing-a-longs and shows how "catchy" this band can be.
"Montrose" appears here again and itís as good and well structured as it was in Dhalia; its mood is perfect and the vocals give the song a lot of intimacy which fits the lyrics perfectly. The album ends with ďSidekickĒ, a slow paced, ballad-esque acoustic track that concludes Real Talk in a more calm, intimate and melodic way.
Unfortunately you will not find anything original or new here and sometimes the melodies seem re-used from other bands. From time to time a sense of ďdeja vuĒ is inevitable and although itís nothing too bad it can be a little upsetting. The production values are also too high, and sometimes vocals get drowned out, which is understandable giving the fact that this is a indie release.
With Real Talk, Man Overboard proved that all the fans weren't wrong, as it's made up of thirteen (if we count the exclusive bandcamp track) pop-punk gems. With honest lyrics, catchy melodies and fast guitars... what more can a man ask for?