Release Date: Mar 10, 2009
Record label: Epitaph
Genre(s): Rock, Pop, Punk
Not Without a Fight was released in early 2009, a year in which the intersection between pop-punk and emo-pop had become impossibly crowded with young, fresh-faced bands looking to funnel their adolescence into hit records. Pitted against that age bracket, New Found Glory ran the risk of appearing far too old to play this sort of music, the bulk of which caters to teenaged audiences in the first place. Not Without a Fight is par for the pop-punk course, though, receiving its biggest boosts from producer Mark Hoppus (who, at the age of 30, was still wooing high-school students during blink-182's glory days) and the mature performance of frontman Jordan Pundik, who sounds less nasal here than on previous records.
Review Summary: DisappointingMy god, after their EP on Bridge Nine Records and their subsequent signing to Epitaph it seemed like anything was possible for NFG. It seemed like the band could just blame their old record label for the sudden change of direction found on Coming Home and go back to the pop-punk that made them famous. The optimistic among us saw the album title, Not Without a Fight, as further proof that NFG were coming back strong.
The interesting (disturbing?) thing about New Found Glory is that, despite the fact that the band is collectively approaching 30 and have no doubt had to deal with at least a few Big Issues in life, their songs still brim with the same naïve, euphoric energy that you felt when the last class bell would ring on Friday. It’s clear that this band knows what they’re good at, and they’re not about to let dreary things like “age” and “experience” darken their songwriting or compromise their ability to soundtrack another suburban teenage summer—which, in perfectly equal measures, sums up their sixth LP’s primary strength and weakness. Given they’re one of the originators of Warped Tour pop-punk, with over a decade of experience under their belt, you’d think NFG would be itching to break out of the now-overcrowded genre box they’ve been spending so much time in.