Ben Diesel and The ‘We’ve Always Partied’ EP.

Ben Diesel – St. Louis, Missouri, USA.

‘Remember when Pop-Punk was fun? Ben Diesel remembers.’

This was one of those reviews where I hadn’t the foggiest of ideas what I would behold. Once I had beheld the EP in question, I found myself completely dumfounded.

Sounding like a combination of vintage Alkaline Trio, Lit, Weezer and a minute amount of Skiba-182, the band take their only want in life – to party and channel it through their physical maturity into the mental lack of.  I mean that in the nicest way possible, for these are three men who are old enough to know better but are choosing not too.

The following review has been brought to you by Pepperidge Farm.
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St. Louis, MO.

Vintage Matt Skiba-esque vocals greet you via dark and witty lyrics. Musically, the Surf-Pop-Punk guitar tone of Weezer carries you playfully and you instantly sing-a-long. You envision the late 90’s and early 2000’s where classic Pop-Punk was still in abundance but was waning slowly and diversifying. You’re sat in the sun with your friends in some field or Skate Park not wanting to go home for that dreaded family meal.

‘Seymour Class’ could have been on either of The Wonder Years The Upsides or Suburbia… if the band had implemented the Cali-Surf sound into their backing vocals. ‘Seymour Class’ is one of the best on the release but unfortunately has to end in favour of another tale of love loss in ‘Playing With Matches’.

The Surf Rock guitar tone never really goes away but with its good friend Mr. bass it dances with Post-Punk in ‘Play With Matches’. The tracks chorus is unfortunately relatively flat compared to the verses rather than being the highlight as the genre standard usually dictates, but what are rules?

The sad lament of ‘Ralph The Mouth’ plays with this dreary 80’s gloom and tone further but also in the manner of every sad Pop-Punk song. Now, quite naturally you may roll your eyes at such a description but this fourth track supplants number two as the best on the release. The guitar tone and melodies are near-perfect and carry a slight progressive tone (for the band) which eludes to some further possible changes down the line.

‘Fine Little Helper’ sits somewhere between Gritty Garage Rock, chilled and probably stoned Surf and playful Pop-Punk. The vocals harmonies, which are one of more enjoyable aspect of this band, are at their best while they help in the telling of the classic Pop-Punk-kid Vs. Suburbia stand-off.

‘Wanderlust’ closes an EP that although sad and reflective, is really quite fun. The mentality of the band, one of enjoyment in their music, is evident even in the most serious of moments.

Pop-Punk can be fun and it can also be sad and in their happy-go-lucky way, Ben Diesel have managed it. I look forward to the next shindig.

Find the band below:


Matthew Speer

Matt has 2.1 BA in History and is most likely somewhere in his twenties. He enjoys a wide range of music, but has a strong penchant for Punk-Rock. Originally he hails from the Isle Of Wight off the South Coast of England, UK and spends most of his time around England's South-West.

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