Sum 41.  Photo courtesy of  Big Picture Media. Used With Permission.
Sum 41. Photo courtesy of Big Picture Media. Used With Permission.

The early 2000s was responsible for many mainstream music acts that defined our existence amidst the receding era of 90s sensibilities. Sum 41 was so young when they first came out, looking at them now, it wouldn’t be surprising to hear millennials speak of the band as if ’13 Voices’  (their latest album) is their first major-release record when it’s in fact their 7th. 

After a hiatus due to lead singer Deryck Whibley’s dance-with-death, Sum 41 is back and as relevant as ever. Their new album feels like it does more than just pick up off from where ‘Screaming Bloody Murder’ left—perhaps in part thanks to the return of the pin-up looks and fast hands of Dave ‘Brown Sound’ Baksh. Legacy fans will quickly note the numbers that feel like they’re from the sessions of ‘Does This Look Infected?’ and ‘Chuck’. Aided by the rallying drums of Frank Zummo, the calming swag of Tom Thacker, the admirably accurate bass-lines of Jason McCaslin, and the woeful words of tunesmith Deryck Whibley, ’13 Voices’ is a statement to the rock ‘n roll world that Sum 41 is far from relinquishing their claim. 

The tracks range from a call to guitars in ‘God Save Us All’ to the maddening frustrations of the climb and personal struggle in ‘War’ to the awareness of fascistic indoctrination of our children in ‘There Will Be Blood’ that would even make the smugness of intellectuals like Christopher Hitchens nod in respect. 

The sound is raw yet cultivated; the melodies are progressive yet true to their raison d’être; and the musicianship holds up terrifically since those early days of punk-rock hooliganry. The camaraderie is still so real and the music still so charismatic that one romantic listener might dare say that after 7 impressive albums, the world still has their magnum opus to look forward to. 

Sum 41 will be wrapping up their U.S. tour schedule in SoCal in San Diego on Saturday the 5th and in Los Angeles on Sunday the 6th. CLICK HERE to see if tickets are still available for either show.

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