With Good Time, Teenanger is at the height of their power, expressing themselves on their own terms and having fun while doing it.
Thirteen years is enough time to change anyone. Just ask Toronto’s DIY institution, Teenanger, whose albums are some of the most consistently ambitious punk music this country has produced. Their sixth and latest offering, Good Time, is an irreverent, idiosyncratic aural exploration of the modern world that you can dance to.
With Good Time, Teenanger feels like a band at the height of their powers, expressing themselves on their own terms and having fun while they do it. It boasts bountiful harmonies, bigger choruses, and vocals that sit upfront in the mix. The sophisticated yet understated songs bounce seamlessly between post-punk and new wave, creating something completely unique.
While the opening one-two punch of “Beige” and “Trillium Song” perfectly sets the tone for what is to come, “Romance For Rent” may be their catchiest song to date with its blissful harmonies, reverberated guitar, and hand drum overdubs. There is also an undeniably snarky tone that runs through the entire record. The chorus of the title-track might be the most telling, crystallized version of this attitude, as vocalist Chris Swimmings and bassist Melissa Ball sing “We are all having a good time / We are all getting along”. One can almost see the sardonic smirk plastered across their faces.
Released on their own imprint, Telephone Explosion, with production by their drummer Steve Sidoli and mixing by Sandro Perri (who has worked with the likes of Doomsquad and Absolutely Free, as well as being an accomplished solo musician), Good Time is certainly a continuation of the fully-formed sound they harnessed on 2017’s Teenager. It’s also a far cry from the lo-fi, ramshackle garage punk of their earlier albums, but the band doesn’t lose any of their edge with the cleaner production.