Review: Eureka California/Good Grief - "Split"

Eureka California/Good Grief - Split 7"
(2013 Rok Lok)
"Percussive, buzzing chords hold the  pop-punk tunes together like corn syrup in a candy bar"
Though the Long Island-based label Rok Lok Records is known mostly for its tape releases, when they shell out the cash to press a record you can almost guarantee the bands that appear on it bring something extra to the table. Eureka California and Good Grief, the acts on either side of Rok Lok's most recent split single, both possess a timeless punk quality that's pleasing to the ear, though not so powerful that it distracts from the music itself. The quality they share is warm and slightly grainy, the lovably honest tone attributed to K Records post-punk and late 80's skate video soundtracks. 

Upon removing the record from its yellow paper sleeve, I first played Eureka California's side of the split. With its jangly guitars, warbly bass and almost forcefully jolly vocals, the band's first offering, "Turn On Autopilot" reminded me of a single by the McTells that I own. If the lovely cover art didn't tip you off, there is plenty of twee influence coursing through the grooves of this record. Injected with some garage-punk force, Eureka California's side is simple, but addictive.

Though the band's sound may not be as "full" as that of their split-mates, Good Grief's tracks are even more jaunty than Eureka California's. Percussive, buzzing chords hold the two pop-punk tunes together like corn syrup in a candy bar, leaving a sugary, tingling aftertaste. With sunshiny melodies that could easily be mistaken for Tiger Trap tunes, Good Grief completes a record to play in your rotation of sprightly twee gems.