Face to Face, the punk rock band from Victorville, CA, released its ninth album, “Protection,” earlier this month, and despite some rocky components in lyricism and originality in a few numbers, fans of punk will not be disappointed.
The opening track, “Bent But Not Broken,” is punk rock perfection, and a stellar way to open the album, with strong vocals by lead singer Trever Keith and gritty punk melodies.
“I Won’t Say I’m Sorry” explains itself in the title, a harsh commentary on: “I won’t say I’m sorry / I won’t take back a single word.” A high-energy song with an amazing guitar introduction, a great follow up to “Bent But Not Broken.”
“Double Crossed” is another brilliant work. With melodies reminiscent of early Fall Out Boy albums and strong lyrics such as “I should have done away with you,” the track is great for the punk fan.
“See If I Care” comes next, a beautifully pain-filled work, with lyrics such as “I used to hate being alone / You’ve taken away from me everything I’ve ever known.” With killer bass and rhythm guitars to spring a glorious melody, this song is an easy favorite.
The fifth track, “Say What You Want,” is alright. Though it has a nice sound, the song doesn’t have a moment of true climax, or great transitions from verse to chorus, in addition to being a little bland compared to Face to Face’s other works.
The album’s namesake, “Protection,” comes next, and is another mediocre track. It has cliché lyrics, but is overall enjoyable to listen to.
The seventh track, “Fourteen Fifty-Nine,” incorporates elements of the harsher sounds of punk rock, with biting lyricism and vocals that were hard to discern at times. The song’s greatest component, though, had to be the drum track by Danny Thompson, a very catchy beat.
“It Almost All Went Wrong” follows. Its lyrics stay true to its title, and its melody was reminiscent of mid-90s Green Day albums. A very catchy piece, and definitely worth a listen.
Track nine, “Keep Your Chin Up,” is one of the best on the album. A song perfect for the mosh pit at a live show, it describes not letting others bring you down through clever and meaningful lyrics: “it was a contradiction wrapped up in a cliché / It’s the old catch-22.”
“Middling Around” follows, a song with guitars that employ elements of metal rock this is another powerhouse track, with lyrics such as “are you telling me that nobody cares?”
The final number, “And So It Goes,” ends the album with a commentary on prejudice: “we’re all made of flesh and bone just the same.” This song has a lovely melody, and is a great way to end this impeccable punk album.