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Album Review: CHUNK! NO, CAPTAIN CHUNK! Pardon My French

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When you first hear a band name like Chunk! No, Captain Chunk!, you might either get the reference, or groan at yet another obtuse band name more than likely tied to a metalcore band; perhaps both. If you haven't heard of them before, rest assured, the shoe fits. Pardon My French marks the band's second album with Fearless Records, and also their newest album since 2010. C!NCC! is known for blending pop punk styles with metalcore; very similar to A Day To Remember. So don't expect anything different; Pardon My French delivers exactly that.

Pardon My French is driven more on the pop punk feel and formulas in its songwriting than the metalcore feel; although both of those genres can have similar formulas. Rather than sounding like extremely watered down metalcore, the sound feels centered around the auras of pop punk with occasional instances of metal. It isn't so much a blend as much as a combination. These moments are most prevalent through the vocals of Bertrand Poncet. One minute he’s singing a catchy chorus, and before you know it, you’re in a breakdown with guttural vocals and that famous deathcore-esque droning “brown” chord. And then you’ll be back into the pop punk feel again before you know it.

This album is like a game of tug-of-war, and the tide is constantly turning. One thing I enjoy about the album is while still being formulaic, it doesn't resort to only getting heavy in the same sections (e.g., only screaming guttural vocals in the bridge). You’ll get a song like “Bipolar Mind” (a fitting title), which begins with a forceful riff but accompanied by melodic guitars and clean singing. And straight out of left field, a buildup to a pretty great breakdown takes over for a little bit, only to bring you back to the nicer pop punk sounds.

“Taking Chances” starts with lighter chords leading undoubtedly to a pop punk feel, but lower-tuned riff clearly leading to a metalcore feel plays simultaneously throughout the entire intro. Pardon My French will keep you interested to see what sort of sudden turns the tracks will take. One problem that the album runs into is the tendency to get a little repetitive. It's mostly apparent with the clean vocal choruses, as after a while they all can start sounding the same. The repetitive song structures do become noticeable as well, but definitely isn't a deal-breaker for this album.

In many ways, Pardon My French, and bands like Chunk! No, Captain Chunk! represent a lot of things that many other metalheads despise about metalcore and other bands in their same league; the so-called “easycore” subgenre bands like C!NCC! and A Day To Remember are lumped into. But truthfully, this was a great album. It's highly energetic, catchy, and heavy in all the right places. And it's also a great listen if you're used to simple pop punk or just generic metalcore. If you're already not into metalcore, punk, or bands associated with C!NCC!, then chances are you're not going to like this at all. But if you are into those styles, or even USED to be, C!NCC! and Pardon My French has something for you. You get all the energy and good-timey feelings of pop punk and the aggression of metalcore all in one package. I will personally be looking for more updates from C!NCC! in the future.


"Restart" (Lyric video)

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