Southern New Jersey’s Coming Clean has returned with its sophomore effort Drive Safe, the follow up to its 2011 debut Trying, and a collection that focuses on the trials and tribulations of a relationship.
With the first line of this record: “The following is based on a true story,” Coming Clean emphasizes that the material being discussed has all been drawn from real life inspirations…and the band has managed to spin those experiences into Pop-Punk gold complete with chunking axe riffs, sizzling leads, a powerful low-end, and Brandon Rosenberg’s abrasive, candy-coated croon tying it all together.
The unquestionable highlight of the EP is the creative lyricism found on such songs as “6 x 6,” where Rosenberg admits “I broke my legs to keep from running back too soon/But my arms just pulled my body back to you.” The song is a musical venture into the vocalist’s cranial sparring match as his thoughts race between moving on from this girl or being by her side; the chaos plays out in the form of lyrics looping over one another while guitars carry the madness onward. “You move away and I keep/Both of my feet in the ocean just to share the coast with you.” Does he want to stay? Does he want to leave? Perhaps not even Rosenberg knows the answer. “I broke my hands to keep from writing this to you/But my voice carried it all the way to the moon.” Coming Clean has accurately depicted the feelings of indecision and doubt within a relationship.
That being said, Rosenberg makes his decision crystalline on “Pity Vote,” artfully stating “You’re an open book to me that I just don’t care to read anymore/I wrote you down/I crossed you out/You let me in/Now show me how to write myself out.” Again, these sentiments are echoed on the closing salvo, “Blowfish,” “Two-faced is an understatement/Three-strikes is another day with you.”
Through vivid imagery and alluring melodies, Coming Clean delivers heartfelt sentiments without straying from its Punk roots. A none too easy hurdle to overcome.
MUST HEAR TRACK: “6 x 6” – Literally the dimensions of a coffin, you’ll start to think you’re trapped in one when the lyrics start looping and swirling in your headphones.
[wp_bandcamp_player type=”track” id=”649920946″ size=”grande” bg_color=”#FFFFFF” link_color=”#4285BB”]