Album Review: Coral Springs – Always Lost, Never Found

Dutch pop-punks Coral Springs channel skate-punk talent to deliver a skilled and varied debut album.

Review by Alan Corcoran

There’s a moment at 1 minute 46 seconds into Taking A Fall, the second song of Coral Springs‘ Always Lost, Never Found, that made me realise that this album is a keeper. It is a brief, catchy breakdown that bounces along and radiates a feeling of pure joy. It’s not slow, or even particularly heavy, but goddamn does it elevate a good song into a great one. It’s the type of artistic genre-melding movement that New Found Glory produced in Not Without A Fight, but it’s applied with a more deft touch.

Coral Springs, despite their name, influences and general aesthetic, do not hail from So Cal, but rather the West Coast of the Netherlands. Cartological pedants amongst you might point out that most of the coastline in the Netherlands is technically west coast – that it doesn’t even have an East Coast – but that’s beside the point.

Before you have a chance to draw breath after that breakdown, Voices crashes in with an opening riff that I don’t want to compare to blink-182 after guitar lessons from some euro skate-punkers, but…

I fucking love the technical prowess displayed on this album. From the individual musicianship, to the melodies, to the overall sense of songwriting. Few bands manage to merge the poppy sensibilities of American pop punk with the speedy riffage of euro skate-punk, but Coral Springs do.

This isn’t a breakneck race of punk fury to the finish; don’t get me wrong. There’s plenty of emo influence sprinkled throughout the album. Slower sections, with heartfelt lyrics that allow the vocals to shine. The album is called Always Lost, Never Found, so you know, it was never going to be all squatting, bed bugs and riot-inciting.

Song after song, Coral Springs deliver quality pop punk, with that hint of euro skate-punk that adds a little something extra. One Gesture wouldn’t be out of place on a Tony Hawk’s soundtrack, while the duelling vocals and expansive music in On A Hold show that the band could progress past the DIY punk scene if they wanted to.

It isn’t long before the album is over and it isn’t long before you’re playing it again.

Always Lost, Never Found is Coral Springs debut album. It’s available through Umlaut Records (UK) and SBAM Records (Europe) now, on a variety of gorgeous vinyl splatters.

Shout Louder’s Sarah W recently spent 24 hours in a van getting to the Coral Springs’ album launch show with The Human Project – read her amusing account of the experience here.

Review by Alan Corcoran

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