Out of Seattle, Washington comes an upstart band that could be well upon their way into taking the next step in terms of creating some solid underground punk rock with a fuzz and garage feel to it, and that band is known as Four Lights. On April 20th, Four Lights will be releasing their album entitled “Kobayashi Maru” via Bomb Pop & Stardumb Records.
Four Lights is composed of Dan Gardner on vocals/guitar, Brian Lewis on bass/vocals, Jeff Mangalin on guitar/vocals, and KII Kay on drums. They have taken their brand of rock that is influenced by groups like The Damned, Husker Du, The Replacements, with 1990’s Weezer, threw it into a blender, added some tongue in cheek, and threw together some anti-love songs.
The guitars and rhythms are quite snappy overall, as they scream and adorn for that punk/garage rock of yesteryear, yet having the poppy feel of early alternative such as The Replacements with tracks such as “ComRAD” and “Again And Again”. The songs tell compelling stories about desperation in relationships, and how sometimes opposites and contradictions don’t necessarily attract one another in “ComRAD”, which tells a compelling story about Communists and Fascists and it makes me surprised that Senator Joe McCarthy and CoIntelPro didn’t come knocking at that song. “Again And Again” sounds snarky yet sounds half-hearted apologetic about missing that loved one. It really displays that tongue in cheek vibe that Four Lights seem to possess in their music.
In the track “We Got ‘Em”, I enjoy the fast breakneck speed that the track offers and the guitars between Gardner and Lewis sound tight in the song as the verse goes through. They intertwine really well in the melodies.
Overall, this album showcases that Four Lights will bode well for themselves in the future in keeping West Coast punk/alternative rock alive and quite well. Their arrangements pack a punch, songs pack a combination of emotions and tongue in cheek, and the listener can easily see how well this would translate into the live setting. Madness To Creation gives this an 8 out of 10 stars just for it being an enjoyable and fun listen.
Here is the track listing below.
- Bent Outta Shape
- Again And Again
- Jimmy’s Song Part 2
- Let’s Burn Burn Burn!
- We Got ‘Em
- He’s Got Good Teeth
- No Return
- Scene Of The Crime
- Jump Back In
Four Lights have a few shows coming up in the Pacific Northwest, along with a stop in San Diego, California. Check out the tour dates below.
4/20/2018 – Seattle, WA – The Kraken (Record Release Show)
4/21/2018 – Tacoma, WA – The Valley
5/12/2018 – Seattle, WA – The Kraken with My Life in Black and White
5/17-5/20/2018 – San Diego, CA – La Escalera Fest 7
6/8/2018 – Bellingham, WA – Boscoe’s
6/9/2018 – Seattle, WA – The Kraken
Fans can find Four Lights at the following locations: