Houston pop-punkers Waterparks are back with their long-awaited third full-length album titled Fandom released Friday, October 11th via Hopeless Records. Fandom discusses some of the hypocrisy of the fandom and the music industry as well as the pressures of having to please everyone and be perfect for their fans.
The album starts with a quick little track titled ‘Cherry Red.’ This track is short, and to the point, there’s about half a verse that leads into the chorus, and then it’s over. It is such a significant build-up, but then it is a bit of an anti-climax the track builds up, and then it just cuts off so suddenly and then leads right into the second single off the album ‘Watch What Happens Next.’ This track dives deep into the hypocrisy of some fans as well as the industry as a whole. Fans saying they want a new sound from a band but then getting made because it’s not the same as previously released music. This track also discusses some of the financial woes of being an artist and the economic differences between artists of this genre vs. mainstream artists and how it’s unfair. The tone of the vocals is almost sarcastic in sound at some parts, which elevates the track, giving it an extra layer of depth, as well as the intricate but funky guitar riffs that are scattered throughout, it makes this track a lot of fun. Their next single ‘Dream Boy’ follows up next on the album. This track has a more electro-pop vibe with a bit of autotune being mixed in to distort some of the words. This song discusses more in-depth the obsession of some of the fandom on looks and the pressure of having to fit into this mold. It outlines how vocalist Awsten Knight feels that he has been built up to be a perfect person in someone’s mind, and having to feel the pressure of not wanting to let someone down if that expectation isn’t met when you meet face to face. Next comes Turbulent, which was the first single to have been released from the band before the album announcement.
FANDOM takes you through some of the perils of the music industry and just the culture of today. It discusses the pressures of being looked up to and the hypocrisy of the industry. It took a few listens for me, but I am really starting to love this album. Its definitely not perfect, a few of the tracks seemed to just end suddenly, and it’s a bit confusing and not very fitting. Overall though, I really enjoyed it, and it is refreshing to see an artist finally call out some of the issues discussed on this album.
Waterparks will be hitting the road this fall in support of Fandom, so make sure to hit up a show if it is coming through your city and pick up a copy of Fandom today.
Waterparks – FANDOM tracklisting
1. Cherry Red
2. Watch What Happens Next
3. Dream Boy
4. Easy To Hate
5. High Definition
7. Group Chat
9. Never Bloom Again
10. I Miss Having Sex, But At Least I Don’t Want To Die Anymore
11. War Crimes
14. Zone Out
15. I Felt Younger When We Met