3/16 KUMD Album Review: Jeff Rosenstock

Mar 16, 2015

Jeff Rosenstock’s new album, We Cool? is well… cool.  All the songs are about drinking and crappy girlfriends. It’s kick-ass, total bro music.  It’s everything you want pop-punk to be, and it’s very well done. The album also has a college vibe that is very relatable, and it’s a step in the right direction after his first album.  The album has a consistent theme and is equal amounts of punk, rock, pop, or ballad.  It leaves the audience excited to see what Rosenstock does next.  

Rosenstock’s old band Bomb the Music Industry broke up nearly 4 years ago now.  We Cool? is Rosenstock’s 2nd solo album, his first in two years since 2012’s I Look Like Sh--.  He mainly uses guitar, drums, bass guitar, singing and synths to create his music, but there are moments of exploration through nonconventional methods. Rosenstock uses an accordion in one song, and an electronic midi pad to replace the drums in the first track on the album. He also uses a great contrast of dynamics, many of the songs have emotional quiet sections followed by intense choruses. 

Rosenstock’s lyrics are phenomenal, and they are sung with a passion that makes you really feel the weight of the words. The best example of this are lyrics from the single, “Nausea” – “I got so tired of discussing my future/I’ve started avoiding the people I love/Evenings of silence and mornings of nausea/Shake and sweat and I can’t throw up.”   Another thing that stuck out was the incredible drumming. It’s refreshing to see original drum beats and fills.   Rosenstock is currently touring for this new album, and he often checks in on his website. On 3/10/15 he posted, “We expected maybe 20 or 30 people to come to most of the shows, but instead were surprised by like way more than that at all the shows.” It’s that humble attitude that makes Rosenstock relatable as a person and a musician, making me look forward to seeing what Rosenstock will be doing next.