When: Wed., Nov. 28, 5 p.m. 2012
The top track for Paris band Chunk! No, Captain Chunk! on Spotify is a cover of Kesha's "We R Who We R," recorded for the fourth volume of a Fearless Records compilation series where bands reimagine Top 40 hits as the kind of glossy, processed punk the Warped Tour set goes apeshit over. A Kesha cover isn't a stretch for CNCC: they play a post-metalcore version of pop punk sometimes half-jokingly called "easycore," which juxtaposes slick keyboards, clean vocals, sunny melodies, and major chords with blunt, chugging riffs, hammering double kick drum, booming breakdowns, and guttural growls. Basically they're a pop band already, dressed up in aggro drag. On CNCC's 2011 debut, Something for Nothing (Fearless), the brutal and the saccharine seem to be competing to see which can be more distracting—the combination often feels bizarre and artificial, and neither element does the group's songwriting chops any favors. The album does include some straightforward pop moments, thankfully—the a cappella harmonies that close "For All We Know" could make for a real hit, whiny vocals and all. But by and large it seems that CNCC have put their hearts into songs like "In Friends We Trust," a goofy anthem that apparently aspires to be the same kind of fun party-time nonsense that used to drive punks away from mainstream pop. —Leor Galil Woe, Is Me headlines; Chunk! No, Captain Chunk!, Our Last Night, and Secrets open.