Ray Rocket

Do You Wanna Go To Tijuana

Rise Records

Rating: 4/5




After fifteen years fronting Teenage Bottlerocket, Ray Carlisle ventures into solo territory for the release of his acoustic debut, Do You Wanna Go To Tijuana.  Under the moniker of Ray Rocket, Carlisle has seized the opportunity to rewrite his band’s Ramones-style pop-punk in a deeper, more individualized key.  Featuring a duo of new songs along with a host of Teenage Bottlerocket and Ramones covers, Carlisle translates a batch of twelve three-chord pop-punk earworms into thoughtfully executed, toned-down versions.  These aren’t just copy-and-paste acoustic renditions, but rather re-imaginings that accent the melody and emotion inherent in the originals.

Taken as a whole, Do You Wanna Go To Tijuana plays out with remarkable consistency.  The track listing has been carefully selected to highlight songs that rally around common themes, stand upon sufficiently deep lyrics, and generally lend themselves to being stripped down to their fundamentals and built back up.  Take the formerly harmless little number “Nothing Else Matters (When I’m With You),” which builds upon a simple core of acoustic strums, occasional handclaps, and a chorus introducing flashes of piano and vocal harmonies.  What felt minor and inconsequential in the context of Teenage Bottlerocket brings to light genuine emotion.  A simple comparison to the original content of title track reinforces the outcome.  “You’ve got yourself a condition, you need a physician, and then you put me in an awkward position, when you try to get attention using razor blades to cut up your wrists,” sings Carlisle before launching into a lighthearted, Karate Kid-referencing chorus.  By inserting a hint of more serious subject matter alongside otherwise playful ditties, there’s little questioning as to Ray’s intent.

For an acoustic album, each song feels remarkably full in vision.  Take the undulating, rhythmic pacing of “Go With The Flow,” which layers harmonies, acoustic chords, piano notes and synth sweeps.  Each song’s production lands with remarkable poise, defining Ray Rocket as so much more than just another punk rocker gone unplugged.  Other finely executed examples like “TV Set” and “Radio” reach for similarly grand heights, chiming with bells and electronic orchestration in subtle but commanding ways.  Carlisle’s cover of The Ramones’ iconic “Pet Cemetery” takes full advantage of such ambience, building up the spooky, sing-along essence it’s known for.  For all that goes on, Ray Rocket never seems to risk overdoing it.  

For a straight-up three-chord pop-punker, Ray Rocket admirably transforms his band’s toe-tapping numbers into an insightful and focused side project.  While more original compositions would have been preferable, Do You Wanna Go To Tijuana presents Carlisle as an engaging songsmith that that understands the nuances of connecting with audiences without sacrificing the fun and games that originally put Teenage Bottlerocket on the map.  A great ice breaker with the best yet to come.


Ray Rocket/ KJ Jansen

Live In Calgary (4/22/16)

Dickens Pub




This was a special evening for fans of classic pop punk music. Not only was local legend KJ Jansen (Chixdiggit) gracing the stage, but Teenage Bottlerocket’s Ray Carlisle was making one of his first live appearances under his solo moniker, Ray Rocket. Add in Ryan Dix from Alberta’s second best pop punk group, Old Wives, and it was an undeniably stacked lineup. The coolest part of the entire experience is that it was an acoustic show, which provided ample opportunity for crowd interaction and smiling sing alongs.

 While the prairies of Western Canada are often overlooked by touring bands, all three of these artists have played countless shows in the province, which is always helpful when building excitement for a show. That being said, there were a few people in the crowd who were surprised when Carlisle stepped on stage because they didn’t realize who Ray Rocket was. 

While the venue was still filling up as Ryan Dix took the stage, he played a great set for those who were present. The short set consisted largely of Old Wives songs, such as Here We Go Again and It’s All Over, both of which worked well with the acoustic treatment. He included a cover of Joel Plaskett Emergency’s True Patriot Love, which kind of fell flat as most people appeared unfamiliar with the indie tune. It was a short and fun set, which worked well to kick the night off.

The floor filled up when KJ Jansen took the stage with his guitar. With a solo release reportedly in the works (judging from his recent solo tour mates, most likely coming out on Joey Cape’s One Week Records), I was eager to see him play solo for the first time. Chixdiggit are a punk institution in Alberta, the goofy southern counterpart to Edmonton’s more hardcore SNFU. For many of us in the 90s, these bands were our closest connection to the exploding LA punk scene and gained a certain legendary status because of this. For those who have seen Chixdiggit live, Jansen’s goofy sense of humour is intact when he plays solo as well. In fact, with the distraction free environment provided, his sharp wit was more evident than ever. He declared that he wasn’t using a set list and relied upon crowd requests, although there were a couple songs that he vetoed. At times the crowd was singing along loud enough to drown the man with the mic out, which is always a goosebump inducing moment. He cracked up laughing while trying to sing I Wanna Hump You after dedicating it to Old Wives’ Shaun Millard, who was celebrating his birthday. Jansen plowed through numerous fan favourites from throughout the band’s career (I Remember You, Chupacabras, Miso Ramen, Sikome Beach…) with plenty of banter interspersed between and sometimes during songs. It was a surreal experience, which was magnified when he led the crowd in singing my favourite song, I Feel Like Gerry Cheevers (Stitch Marks on My Heart)

One of the best parts of an acoustic show is the very small delay between sets. Shortly after Jansen left the stage, Ray Rocket made his Canadian debut. While the majority of the audience hadn’t likely picked up his recently released album, the fact that he rerecorded Teenage Bottlerocket favourites from throughout their discography made the songs familiar coming in. In addition to covering the majority of his solo release, Carlisle added in some other songs, such as the Top Gun salute Maverick and Minecraft referencing kiddie favourite They Call Me Steve. His Ramones medley was wonderful and showed anyone who might be oblivious where his musical roots lay. 

While he was visibly less comfortable with the between song banter than Jansen, the set was well received and a fun time. He told a story about his girlfriend and poked fun at her taste in music (Nickelback…) and was noticeably happy about her presence in his life. The only downside to the entire night was a group of four drunken bros who stood right at Carlisle’s feet the whole time and yelled obnoxiously. This was most evident when he closed the show with a tribute to his brother Brandon before singing a mournful First Time. While he was trying to talk about his brother’s death and explain how continuing to play music had helped him cope, these morons kept yelling and being idiots. Some people have zero concept of etiquette. Despite their best intentions, the set was a great introduction to the more restrained solo side of Teenage Bottlerocket’s Ray Carlisle and a perfect end to a great show.

While there is an abundance of corny Punk Goes Acoustic styled music projects out there, this was a well played execution of the concept. All three artists translated their melodic pop punk songs into the singer songwriter format, which allowed the crowd to sing along in a new way. Instead of crowd surfing and pogo-ing, everyone stood near the stage and sang as loud as they could to songs that they knew and loved. There are large festivals and wild punk rock club shows that are common in the scene, but every once in a while a unique show comes along that makes you realize how lucky you are to have been a witness. 

Ray Carlisle (Teenage Bottlerocket) – Without You

ray_rocket_coverRay Carlisle of Teenage Bottlerocket has premiered a new song from his first solo album.  The song is titled “Without You” and will appear on the album Do You Want To Go To Tijuana?. The album will include covers, Teenage Bottlerocket songs and original material.

Check out the song below.

Pre-order packages are up now and a video for the title track is released as well. The album will be available through Rise Records on April 1st.

Read More…

Ray Rocket Details Solo LP, Posts Video

ray_rocket_coverRay Carlisle of Teenage Bottlerocket announced his first solo album Do You Want To Go To Tijuana?. The album will include covers, Teenage Bottlerocket songs and original material.

Pre-order packages are up now and a video for the title track is released as well. The album will be available through Rise Records on April 1st.

Check out the video below.

Read More…

Teenage Bottlerocket Remains A Band; Announces New Drummer

Teenage BottlerocketThe future of Teenage Bottlerocket was uncertain after the tragic loss of their beloved drummer and brother Brendan Carlisle in November 2015. The support for the Teenage Bottlerocket family in these hard times was enormous, still it was a hard decision for the band what to do moving forward after losing a founding member. “We kept asking ourselves and each other: what would Brandon want us to do?

Today Teenage Bottlerocket confirmed they will remain a band and keep playing. They announced their new drummer, Darren Chewka (Old Wives), Hailing from Edmonton, Alberta.

Read the full statement from the band Full statement from Teenage Bottlerocket. You can also watch a video of Teenage Bottlerocket practising Bigger Than Kiss with Chewka.

Video: Teenage Bottlerocket – Dead Saturday

Teenage BottlerocketLaramie, Wyoming pop-punk act Teenage Bottlerocket has premiered a music video for the song “Dead Saturday.”  The song comes from the album Tales From Wyoming which was released this past March on Rise Records.  

Listen to the music video below.

Read More…

UK Tour: The Decline (Includes New Dates)

The DeclineAustralian skate punks The Decline are hitting the UK next month for a series of shows with the likes of MDC, Teenage Bottlerocket and Giants. The band are out in support of their new record Resister, which is due out on August 3rd.

Check out the full list of dates below.

Read More…

Teenage Bottlerocket Full Album Stream

Teenage BottlerocketLaramie, Wyoming pop-punk act Teenage Bottlerocket has premiered a full album stream of their brand new full length.  The album is titled Tales From Wyoming and is set to drop on on March 31, 2015 on Rise Records.  

Listen to the full stream here.  Pre-orders are live. 

Teenage Bottlerocket - tales from wyoming

Teenage Bottlerocket

Tales From Wyoming

Rise Records

Rating: 3.5/5




After a comfortable two-album tenure with San Francisco’s Fat Wreck Chords, Laramie, Wyoming quartet Teenage Bottlerocket continues their label hopping endeavors.  This time they venture to a label in Portland where few three-chord pop-punk bands have set foot before: Rise Records.  For such a strategic label, the signing is an encouraging first as Rise Records continues to diverge from its hardcore/metalcore roots and lead the charge in the seldom-identified punk-rock resurgence that seems to be occupying the larger independents like Epitaph these days.  

To mark the occasion, Teenage Bottlerocket offers up their sixth studio full length, Tales From Wyoming.  The disc confidently continues the simplistic quartet’s proven reputation for quick witted, Ramones inspired rattlers.  The usual comparisons to The Lillingtons, The Copyrights, The Methadones and The Riptides still very much apply, with Teenage Bottlerocket infusing their unmistakable mark therein.  Quick and dirty opener “In My Head,” with its highly repetitious, single line chorus should quell any fears associated with the label change.  Likewise, follow-up “I Found The One” and “Nothing Else Matters (When I’m With You)” takes the place of the rather chipper pop-punk, smitten-with-love tunes that typically scatter a Teenage Bottlerocket playlist (also see: “Can’t Quit You” and “Been Too Long”).  And while the trio of opening tracks lack a certain lyrical distinction, the tunes maintain the tight pop-punk musicianship that makes Teenage Bottlerocket such a stable pillar.

It isn’t until the modern, Minecraft inspired tune “They Call Me Steve” that the band gets smarter with their phrasing and themes.  “They call me Steve, I’ll do anything you want me to, I’ll dig a hole to hell and back for you,” describes the band of various scenarios inspired by the open-world, block-based video game phenomenon.  Meanwhile, “Cockroach Strikes Again” takes a page from The Lillingtons’ playbook of television inspired murder mysteries and sleuthing capers.  The guitar solo-strengthened “La Collina” switches gears to glutenous, near-fatal overindulgence of Italian cuisine, and “Haunted House” gets into the Halloween spirit early with a rapidfire tempo that rattles off references to Vincent Price and various horror cliches.  Across Tales From Wyoming, the band runs the gamut of quick to quicker tempos, layering on Ray Carlisle and Kody Templeman’s various vocal harmonies in “Can’t Quit You” and dirtying their production in the fiercely aggressive, self-destructive piece, “I Wanna Die.”  Overall tempos land closer to the mid-range, but the overall effect remains familiar.

Of particular note, “First Time” stands as the band’s first real point of stylistic divergence.  In fact, the album closing acoustic finale feels very polished and foreign.  Unravelling as a violin guided, sentimental emotional piece; even the vocals mark an interesting departure.  Teenage Bottlerocket doesn’t do anything wrong per se, but the song just sounds more like Dave Hause mixed with a sappy solo artist rather than something fans would sign up for when they see the traditional skull and crossbones on the Tales From Wyoming cover.  Hopefully the change doesn’t signal a sign of all things to come, even if a similar track or two on subsequent albums wouldn’t be unwelcome either.  

By and large, Teenage Bottlerocket’s Rise Records debut fits their well established reputation for tight, ear-grabbing pop-punk tunes.  Tales From Wyoming’s core remains as catchy and witty as ever, even if a handful of more lyrically generic tracks tend to dominate the front end.  A safe bet for fans and newcomers alike.

Teenage Bottlerocket – I Found The One

Teenage BottlerocketLaramie, Wyoming pop-punk act Teenage Bottlerocket has premiered a new song and features an accompanying music video.  The track is titled “I Found The One” from their recently announced Rise Records debut.  The album will serve as their sixth full length and will be titled Tales From Wyoming and is set to drop on on March 31, 2015.  Pre-orders are live. 

Listen to the new song below along with full tour listings.

Tours: Teenage Bottlerocket / The Copyrights

Teenage BottlerocketLaramie, Wyoming pop-punk act Teenage Bottlerocket has announced that they will be heading on tour with fellow pop-punks The Copyrights.  The band continues to support their  upcoming Rise Records debut, Tales From Wyoming, which is set to drop on on March 31, 2015.  Pre-orders are live. 

Full tour listings are below.

Read More…

Interview: Teenage Bottlerocket

Teenage BottlerocketWyoming’s pop-punk superstars Teenage Bottlerocket have been busy. Constantly touring the world over, this Ramones-core foursome has been delivering constant three chord punk rock for almost fifteen years now. With a recent move to Rise Records, the band is set to release their 6th studio album, Tales from Wyoming, on March 31st.

We exchanged some e-mails with bassist Miguel Chen about the new album, working with Bill Stevenson as producer, professional wrestling and Metallica’s Jason Newstad.

Read the interview here.

Video: Teenage Bottlerocket – They Call Me Steve

Teenage BottlerocketLaramie, Wyoming pop-punk act Teenage Bottlerocket has premiered a new song and features an accompanying music video.  The track is titled “They Call Me Steve” from their recently announced Rise Records debut.  The album will serve as their sixth full length and will be titled Tales From Wyoming and is set to drop on on March 31, 2015.  Pre-orders are live. 

Listen to the new song below along with full tour listings.

Read More…

Teenage Bottlerocket

Teenage Bottlerocket

Miguel Chen

Rise Records
By on March 17th, 2015 at E-Mail



Wyoming’s pop-punk superstars Teenage Bottlerocket have been busy. Constantly touring the world over, this Ramones-core foursome has been delivering constant three chord punk rock for almost fifteen years now. With a recent move to Rise Records, the band is set to release their 6th studio album, Tales from Wyoming, on March 31st.

We exchanged some e-mails with bassist Miguel Chen about the new album, working with Bill Stevenson as producer, professional wrestling and Metallica’s Jason Newstad.

All photos by Johnny and Dawn Wilson.

Read More…

Video: Teenage Bottlerocket – Haunted House

Teenage BottlerocketLaramie, Wyoming pop-punk act Teenage Bottlerocket has premiered a new music video.  The video features the track is titled “Haunted House” from their recently announced Rise Records debut.  The album will serve as their sixth full length and will be titled Tales From Wyoming and is set to drop on on March 31, 2015.  Pre-orders are live.  

Check out the full video below.

Teenage Bottlerocket will be hitting the road this March with Pennywise and A Wilhelm Scream, and then be taking their act overseas with Masked Intruder in April and May including a performance at this year’s Groezock and Pirate Satellite Festivals.

Read More…

Teenage Bottlerocket Detail New Album; Premiere First Track

Teenage BottlerocketLaramie, Wyoming pop-punk act Teenage Bottlerocket has announced details for their debut Rise Records full length.  The album will serve as their sixth full length and will be titled Tales From Wyoming and is set to drop on on March 31, 2015.  Pre-orders are live.  The band expresses their excitement:

“We worked hard with Jason Livermore and Andrew Berlin engineering at the Blasting Room and the one and only Bill Stevenson producing and we cannot wait for everyone to hear it!.”

Teenage Bottlerocket will be hitting the road this March with Pennywise and A Wilhelm Scream, and then be taking their act overseas with Masked Intruder in April and May including a performance at this year’s Groezock and Pirate Satellite Festivals.

Track listing along with the brand new single, “Nothing Else Matters (When I’m With You).”

Read More…

Tours: Pennywise / Teenage Bottlerocket / A Wilhelm Scream

PennywisePennywise, A Wilhelm Scream and Teenage Bottlerocket will be heading on tour this March.  Pennywise continues to support their latest album, Yesterdays, released last year on Epitaph Records.

Full details can be found below.

Read More…

Teenage Bottlerocket Joins Rise Records

Teenage BottlerocketHere’s a shocker, now former Wyoming Fat Wreck Chords pop-punk band has signed on with Rise Records.  After their time on the road for this year’s Vans Warped Tour, they plan to write their debut Rise release, which will serve as their 6th proper full length.  The album is slated to be recorded in Blasting Room with Bill Stevenson serving as producer (Descendents, Rise Against, Hot Water Music).

The band last released Freak Out! back in 2012.

Interview: Teenage Bottlerocket

Teenage BottlerocketWyoming twin brothers Ray and Brandon Carlisle formed Teenage Bottlerocket in 2001. They’ve built a loyal fan base, joined up with infamous punk label Fat Wreck Chords and toured Europe with metal group Volbeat. Ray Carlisle took some time to discuss what the group has been doing lately as they get ready to hit the road with Pennywise and gear up for a summer on Warped Tour. 

Read the interview here.


Teenage Bottlerocket

Teenage Bottlerocket

Ray Carlisle

Fat Wreck Chords
By on April 9, 2014 at Phone



Wyoming twin brothers Ray and Brandon Carlisle formed Teenage Bottlerocket in 2001. They’ve built a loyal fan base, joined up with infamous punk label Fat Wreck Chords and toured Europe with metal group Volbeat. Ray Carlisle took some time to discuss what the group has been doing lately as they get ready to hit the road with Pennywise and gear up for a summer on Warped Tour.  Read More…

Tours: Pennywise & Teenage Bottlerocket (US & Canada)

PennywiseLegendary California punks Pennywise  have announced a series of tour dates across the US and Canada starting in April and they will be joined by Teenage Bottlerocket for all shows. All or Nothing was the latest release from Pennywise while Freak Out  is the latest offer from the Wyoming punk outfit, both dropping back in 2012.

Check out the full dates below:

Read More…

Teenage Bottlerocket – Ich bin Ausländer und Spreche Nicht Gut Deutsch

teenagebottlerocket5Teenage Bottlerocket has premiered  new song.  The track is titled “Ich bin Ausländer und Spreche Nicht Gut Deutsch” and is due out on their brand new 7″, American Deutsch Bag, via Fat Wreck Chords on November 27, 2013.  The vinyl offering will feature three songs and follows 2012’s Freak Out!  

Listen to the track here.

Teenage Bottlerocket Annonce New 7″

Teenage BottlerocketTeenage Bottlerocket has announced plans to release a brand new 7″, American Deutsch Bag, via Fat Wreck Chords on November 27, 2013.  The vinyl offering will feature three songs and follows 2012’s Freak Out!  The band comments on the new material:

“On Teenage Bottlerocket’s last tour in Europe we made friends with a dude in a Lethal Weapon 2 hat. We referred to him as a Deutsch bag. He was a good sport and found the insult endearing. I’ve always loved Germany. I took German in high school and we sang alot of songs. One of the songs was entitled “Ich bin Auslander und Spreche Nicht Gut Deutsch”. This is roughly translated “I’m not from here and my German sucks”. We decided to make it a pop punk song. If I screw up any of the pronunciation it’s because my German sucks, it’s a pretty good excuse to fuck up the words. We also included a new song about smoking reefer and a song by our dear friend Tony Sly called “Via Munich”. We recorded the 7” at the Blasting Room with Andrew Berlin. Everything seemed to fall into place. The title is my favorite part of it all; ladies and gentleman, I present to you, theAMERICAN DEUTSCH BAG 7″ BY TEENAGE BOTTLEROCKET! The 7″ will be available on our upcoming European tour with VOLBEAT andICED EARTH. Guten tag.”

Album art and track list are available below.

Read More…

Live Concert Review

Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Teenage Bottlerocket, The Flatliners

Live (Aug. 23rd, 2010)

The Trocadero - Philadelphia, PA




The Mighty Mighty Bosstones made their return to Philadelphia after an eight-year absence on Monday, August 23rd. They were to play the prestigious Trocadero, right in the heart of Philly.

The Troc, as it is referred to by many, is an old theatre converted into a concert venue. It’s a small room with a balcony level, and two big points to complain about-the stage is way too high and the barricade is too far out from the stage. Sadly, this made it impossible for Dicky Barrett, the Bosstones’ vocalist, to pass the microphone out to the crowd during their songs.

The first band to hit the stage was the Flatliners, from Toronto. They played an energetic set of uptempo ska-punk. In their 35 minutes, they managed to vary their set up a lot. They included many new songs from Cavalcade, their 2010 release on Fat Wreck Chords. But they didn’t leave out their older material, also playing songs off their first full length, Destroy to Create. This reviewer, while not overly familiar with their material, really enjoyed their high-energy set. The Flatliners are definitely a band to look out for in the future.

Next up was another Fat Wreck band, Teenage Bottlerocket. If you’re a Ramones fan, this band is definitely for you. If you’re not[like this reviewer], they’re not. They’re very nice guys, but they sounded like a carbon copy of the Ramones, with a little more technical instrumentation. I did enjoy their first song, “Skate or Die,” which came from their Fat Wreck debut album, They Came From the Shadows, which was released in 2009. The highlight of their set was definitely when they called Chris from the Flatliners up to play guitar on a song, which their drummer sang. The song, apparently a cover, was about burritos. Brandon, their drummer, made an excellent front man, jumping all around the stage for his minute and a half to shine.

After a 40 minute set from Teenage Bottlerocket, the band got their gear off stage and the crew for the Mighty Mighty Bosstones started to set up. At 9:30PM, the lights went down and the band’s entrance music went on.

When the lights flared on, the band excitedly ran onto the stage to rousing cheers and applause, with Barrett getting the audience to scream before Joe Gittleman yelled “What are these noises!?” and the band kicked into their classic Dr. D from “More Noise & Other Distrubances.”

The Bosstones assaulted Philly with hit after hit, mixing new and old, classics and b-sides. Philly was treated to a few new songs off the band’s 2009 release, “Pin Points & Gin Joints”, such as Graffiti Worth Readingand Too Many Stars. The fans also got treated to cuts from deeper in the Bosstonescatalogue, such as Pictures to Prove It from 1994’s “Question the Answers” and Nevermind Me from their landmark 1997 “Let’s Face It”.

The band was in top form, with Barrett growling and belting out his lyrics with emotion unrivaled in the world of vocalists. The fans screamed back the words with that same fiery passion, especially on classic songs like Holy Smokeand Someday I Suppose. Ben Carr, the Bosstone, was all over the stage, dancing up a storm, sometimes with Barrett joining him in dancing. Trombonist Chris Rhodes was an entertaining figure to watch, as always, especially on You Gotta Go!,where he belted out the bridge in fine form, wailing and yelling in a style very different from the recorded version.

The band closed their main set with their hit The Impression That I Get, going right into their traditional end of show cover of Lights Out, originally by the Angry Samoans.
After a minute of the crowd enthusiastically chanting MIGHTY MIGHTY BOSS-TONES, the band took the stage for an encore, opening with A Pretty Sad Excuse, a 6 minute song found on the end of their most recent 2009 release. They followed it up with Devil’s Night Outthe title track off of their 1990 debut full-length, capping an epic return to Philly for the plaid boys of Boston, leaving the crowd wishing they’d come back and do one more.

Dr. D
Graffiti Worth Reading
Rascal King
You Gotta Go
Pictures to Prove It
Desmond Dekker
Nevermind Me
Someday I Suppose
Wasted Summers
Another Drinking Song
Sugar Free
The One With The Woes
Sad Silence
Royal Oil
Too Many Stars
Allow Them
Hell of a Hat
Na Na Na Na
Holy Smoke
Lights Out
A Pretty Sad Excuse
Devil’s Night Out

Teenage Bottlerocket - Warning Device

Teenage Bottlerocket

Warning Device

Red Scare Industries

Rating: 4/5




I’ve been staring at this blank screen for way too long trying to figure out how to wittingly introduce this album. So long in fact that I’ve just given up because I can’t think of a good way to introduce it. Instead I’ll just say this: Teenage Bottlerocket‘s sophomore album, Warning Device, is sure to end up in many people’s year end lists; and yes, I know, it’s only January.

How can I make such a bold prediction? Well, pretty easily actually because Warning Device is that missing album that all pop-punk fans have been waiting for. It’s fun, poppy, easy to digest, catchy and, once again, fun. Yes, I said fun twice because it’s just that enjoyable.

It’s Wyoming’s answer to The Ramones, with a bit of a Lookout Records flare thrown in and a heavy Queers influence added for good measure. There’s even a touch of The Descendents and Ergs hidden in the songs too; so just from that you should know what you’re getting. It’s a catchy and energetic album that is instantly fun and enjoyable. The two vocalists alternate between songs adding a little diversity between the songs while still being able to maintain a nice flow despite the slight differences between the two And yes, they include the right amount of “woah’s” and “oh’s” too.

Without treading in any new waters, Teenage Bottlerocket cover the regular spectrum of topics found in a pop-punk album but do it in such a way that you can’t help but connect with them and love them. Songs like In The Basement and Totally Stupid are comical songs about teenage angst and being afraid of the unknown monster in the basement. Social Life can be interpreted many ways and strikes a chord with me every time I listen to it. There’s something that just clicks when they say “Yeah, I don’t have a social life. Thought I should let you know. There’s no place I want to go when I turn on the stereo.” Most of the remaining songs hit that pop-punk cliche topic of girls and relationships but once again Teenage Bottlerocket hit it right on the nose in such a way that you can’t scoff at the lyrics but instead soon sing along with them.

The most astonishing aspect of the album is how crystal clear it sounds throughout. While it’s not always the most complex structure, it always sounds great. Three chord pop-punk with the occasional guitar solo thrown in at the bridge and constant Ramones style drumming, Teenage Bottlerocket are able to do more than most bands despite stripping it down to the bare necessities. Plus, with Jason Livermore’s masterful hand behind the knobs, there’s no way it could possibly sound better.

There may be no big surprises or anything like that, but that’s a good thing. Warning Device is a pop-punk record through and through and one that will keep me entertained for the remaining eleven months of the year and probably for some time after that.

Teenage Bottlerocket - They Came From The Shadows

Teenage Bottlerocket

They Came From The Shadows

Fat Wreck Chords

Rating: 3.5/5




In a recent interview, Bad Religion‘s Greg Graffin talked about how the sound of punk has become a somewhat traditional sound now. Rather than condemn the fact, Graffin praised it as he felt it helped give up and coming bands a platform to start with and build on. Throughout all the years of punk rock, I don’t think any band has left their mark on that punk rock platform as much as The Ramones have and to this day you still hear their spastic three-chord attack in new pop-punk songs released every year. Teenage Bottlerocket, while far from being a new, up and coming band since they already have four albums and countless EPs under their belts, are one of the many bands who still use that Ramones pop-punk platform.

On their Fat Wreck Chords debut and follow-up to last year’s highly successful and critically acclaimed Warning Device album, Teenage Bottlerocket deliver yet another fast paced and thoroughly enjoyable pop-punk album. Filled with anthemic chants, nasally vocals and power-chords galore, They Came From The Shadows displays a perfect use of the Ramones song structure all the while merging in elements from the likes of The Descendents (particularly on the comical Fatso Goes Nutzoid), The Parasites, Screeching Weasel and The Queers.

As a whole, the album does definitely feel safe. It’s rare that they pull anything in from out of left field and instead simply stick to what they know best which makes a few songs fall into the background – The Jerk and They Came From The Shadows being perfect examples of that; but as a whole, They Came From The Shadows is simultaneously entertaining and energizing.

From the opening skate chant of Skate Or Die to the self-aggrandizing Bigger Than KissTeenage Bottlerocket continually churn out catchy songs from start to finish. It’s clear that the band is having fun as they sing about relationships gone wrong for more than half the album, but rather than becoming repetitive, they inject the overused subject matter with a fresh face and new attitude.

As far as Ramones-core pop-punk goes, Teenage Bottlerocket are at the forefront of the genre. It’s not life-changing and can, occasionally, be predictable but at the same time it’s fun and incredibly tight which is hard to complain about.

Teenage Bottlerocket - Freak Out!

Teenage Bottlerocket

Freak Out!

Fat Wreck Chords

Rating: 4.5/5




I’ve been resisting Teenage Bottle Rocket since their inception.  Why?  Because I’ve always felt that there are better, smarter, and catchier pop-punk bands out there.  The Lillingtons (yes, I’m aware of the vocal connections), The Copyrights, The MethadonesThe Riptides and a few from It’s Alive Records that I’m sure I’m missing have all overshadowed the boys even while reviews praise them.  But it’s been fairly quiet on the three-chord pop-punk circuit as of late.  So by chance I crossed paths with the Laramie, Wyoming quartet’s latest full length, Freak Out!, and it seems that I’m finally ready to join the party.

Freak Out! resolves my single biggest complaint with the Teenage Bottle Rocket discography: the songs just weren’t engaging.  Perhaps I’ve simply been disconnected with pop-culture in past years, but I finally “get” the majority of these inside jokes. “Headbanger” opens the album with a hilarious observation over the medical concerns of headbanging at concerts (“he whipped his head around and gave himself a concussion”), “Necrocomicon” makes the incredibly smart fusion of comic book festival Comicon and H.P. Lovcraft’s mysterious “book of the dead” lore (the Necronomicon), and “Mutilate Me” makes for a good chuckle about pain-based fetishes.

So the band finally hooked me with their content, but they’re keeping me because of how tight they’ve made their core sound.  These guys have really shaped up since their Total or Warning Device days, and for three-chord punk rockers, they sure know how to use every ounce of musical talent in their genre’s inherently limited scope.  All of those minimalist solos are catchy as hell, and thanks to a makeover on production that started when they signed with Fat Wreck Chords a few years ago; the tracks feel solid and full.  Tracks like “Never Gonna Tell You” ride the wave of crunchy but clear chords, while those like “Who Killed Sensei?” rev up the tempo for a sonic speed boost pacing the album’s meaty fourteen track run time.

Up until this point I’ve always referenced The Lillingtons’ masterpiece The Too Late Show as my coveted three-chord pop-punk reference point.  It is with great pleasure that I invite Teenage Bottle Rocket up to the podium to share that title with Freak Out! (vocalist Kody Templeman
Can finally stop living in his own shadow).  I can’t file a complaint with the album – even the less interesting tracks are interesting enough to keep me glued.  I would be surprised if any comparable act could upstage Teenage Bottle Rocket in the year ahead.  One of the year’s undisputed best.

Tours – Teenage Bottlerocket & The Queers

Teenage BottlerocketWyoming punks Teenage Bottlerocket are embarking on the second leg of a co-headlining tour with The Queers this autumn. Support on all dates will be provided by pop punk band The Copyrights.

Freak Out, the latest full length from Teenage Bottlerocket was released last July via Fat Wreck Chords , whilst the last new material from The Queers was 2010’s Back to the Basement.

Full tour dates, along with a the new Andrew Seward (Against me!) directed Teenage Bottlerocket video for Freak Out, can be seen below.

Read More…

Tours: Face To Face

Face To FaceFace To Face is thrilled to announce that they will be touring in support of their recently released, eighth studio record, Three Chords And A Half Truth via Rise Records. In what could rightfully be called their first overtly political album in their 20-year career, Three Chords And A Half Truth tackles topics facing society in the tech era — where instant gratification and unreal expectation create a warped and dangerous worldview.

The first single off of Three Chords And A Half Truth, title “Bright Lights Go Down,” can be heard here. Tickets and pre-sale information for the tour can be found here. Dates below.

Read More…

Tours: Face To Face / Teenage Bottlerocket / Blacklist Royals / Joshua Black Wilkins

Face To FaceLong running punk band Face To Face has announced a slew of upcoming tour dates with Teenage Bottlerocket, Blacklist Royals and Joshua Black Wilkins .  The band continues to support their recent full length, Three Chords and a Half Truth, released earlier this month via Rise Records. The record follows their 2011 album, Laugh Now Laugh Later, that was released on their own Antagonist Records.

Tour dates can be found below.

Read More…

Video: Teenage Bottlerocket – Cruisin’ For Chicks

Teenage BottlerocketWyoming pop punkers Teenage Bottlerocket has debuted a brand new music video.  The video features the song “Heandbanger” from their recent full length.  The album is titled Freak Out! and was released earlier this month via Fat Wreck Chords.  The disc follows 2009’s They Cam From The Shadows.

Watch the video here.