Forest LawnGlunk Records
By AJ Phink
The Role Models are a London based quartet who arose from the ashes of The Loyalties, they have played their brand of punk rock since the turn of the decade and it would seem that they have been slowly building up to making this album. The Role Models sound is informed by the American bands that were so influential on the fledgling punk scene in the 1970’s, but they have taken this sound and given it a contemporary feel. Forest Lawns is their sophomore album, it follows 2015’s The Go To Guy, that was a fine album in it’s own right but Forest Lawn is a serious progression from their debut full length.
From the opening track, Radio, it becomes clear that the Role Models have delivered an album of anthemic punk power pop, but what separates this album from the herd is that every single track on Forest Lawn hits the spot. As you would expect it’s mostly an uptempo affair, but when the pace does slow it’s done with style, Bullshit Corner is the perfect example of this as it’s the best song that Johnny Thunders never wrote. The choruses are all infectious, the guitar breaks will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up and the production and mix on Forest Lawn suits the material perfectly, as a result every track on Forest Lawn is a slice of perfect punk rock that carries a slightly sleazy rock n roll quality.
If you wanted to criticise this album you could argue that it’s living in the past, but firstly, given this album is so damn good I don’t care whether it’s three decades in the past or transported from the future, and secondly, this is a contemporary take that is informed by the bands that came before them, if you took the best parts from bands such as The Dead Boys, The New York Dolls and The Only Ones and used those elements to make a perfect album this would be the result. I honestly can’t fault Forest Lawn on any level. This is one of the best albums you’ll hear this year and I’m blown away by this quartet’s sophomore release, on the strength of Forest Lawn they should be destined for great things.
Forest Lawn can be ordered, and I think you should order it, here
The Role Models bandcamp can be found here