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Reno Divorce - Laugh Now, Cry Later

  by Benjamin Howarth

published: 23 / 7 / 2004

Reno Divorce - Laugh Now, Cry Later
Label: Boss Tuneage
Format: CDS


Catchy melodic punk rock from Denver-based punks, back with a third release on Boss Tuneage

A lot of people don’t realise it but there’s quite a knack to crafting catchy melodic punk rock songs. I’ve endured far too many hours of terrible punk bands that just can’t seem to find a single catchy melody, so it's not hard to realise that this punk-pop lark is actually much harder than it sounds. Reno Divorce would, rightly, be insulted by being classed in the pop-punk territory. They are more a rock ‘n’ roll band, and if I didn’t know they were from Denver then I’d swear they were Swedish, such is their similarity to the likes of Millencollin and the hard drinking party rock of the Hellacopters and the Backyard Babies. This band is (their words) harking “back to when rock and roll was dangerous”. But they do have some catchy tunes all the same. To be honest, Reno Divorce and I have little in common. I do not own any Backyard Babies, Social Distortion, TSOL or Slayer records and I think the Ramones are the most overrated band ever. I rank Turbonegro as the very worst band I have ever seen (and that includes some unsigned bands that sounded as if this was the first time they’d picked up their guitars), whilst Reno Divorce’s drummer thinks that Turbonegro’s album 'Apocalypse Dudes' is the best album ever made. I am not in any way a rock and roll person. They certainly are! But luckily the six songs on this record, their third release on Boss Tuneage are catchy and feature gritty down to earth lyrics about the struggle of working life, so any difference of musical outlook is irrelevant. Reno Divorce transcends their boring influences to make some original music. Rather than aiming for rock and roll fantasies and meaningless escapism, the lyrics deal rather effectively with drug addiction, lost love, debt, leaving crime behind for a straight life and, by far the strongest song, 'Rocks Under The Hill' offers a harsh but human perspective on the plight of the third world. Despite the grim subject matter, the band thrash and bounce through each song, churning out some great guitar hooks and harmonies. I was sceptical when I picked this up, but in fact, Reno Divorce have managed the rare feat of being a band whose primary aim is to tear it up onstage in a sweaty club and yet still make music that’s worth listening to at home. They are touring Europe later in the year. I hope they come to Exeter… if they do, you’ll see me hiding at the back, nodding along and admiring the moshpit!

Track Listing:-
1 Let's Go Out
2 All She Wants To Know
3 The Killer Inside
4 Don't Have You
5 Laugh Now Cry Later
6 Rocks Under The Hill

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