In Rear-View: Underwatertown by Against What’s Best

Hailing from Watertown, NY, Against What’s Best is made up of Kyle Anders on bass and vocals, Jake Harris on guitar and vocals, Alex Harris on guitar, and Justin Edgar on drums. Pulling influence from

Hailing from Watertown, NY, Against What’s Best is made up of Kyle Anders on bass and vocals, Jake Harris on guitar and vocals, Alex Harris on guitar, and Justin Edgar on drums. Pulling influence from bands, such as The Story So Far, Blink 182 & Taking Back Sunday, this pop-punk power team released their debut album, Underwatertown, on July 15, 2020. 

“We’re Gonna Need A Bigger Boat” is the opening track on Underwatertown and I am immediately taken back to the early years of high school when pop punk ruled most of my world. The music is fast, the vocals are melodic, and I am here for it. Even though this tune is short, the band manages to squeeze in a rad breakdown loaded with heavy drums and guitar before rolling right into “Some Time Away.”

This song is probably one of my favorites on the record. The chorus is catchy with lyrics like “there’s so much more to see and I wanna see everything with you” that will have you singing along and bobbing your head in no time. I love the harmonies on this track and the music is fast and heavy. This song reminded me of something New Found Glory would have put out on “Sticks and Stones” and it made me smile.  

The intro to “Forever Waiting” caught my attention and my ears perked up immediately. The guitars work really well together and Justin beats the shit out of that drum set. I thought that was going to do it for me, however, paying attention to the lyrics really hit close to home these days. “Forever waiting, not making a change. Now I can’t help but to push you away after I carried your weight through the darkest days and hoped that you’d do the same for me.” With a voice that reminds me of Will Pugh of Cartel, I was sucked in. I listened to this track on repeat all night the first time I heard it. 

“Here’s That Song You Always Wanted” breaks the album up a bit and starts off a little slower, really showcasing the dual vocals. As the song progresses, the rest of the bands’ talents are showcased as well. This song is beautifully written and executed by each member of the band. The harmonies throughout make this one a bit softer than the rest of the tracks. 

The album closes out with “Pardon Me, Mr. Jones…Mind If I Call You Davy?” In my opinion, this is the most anthemic track on the album. Lyrically, everyone can relate in some way, shape or form. And musically…well, you’re gonna want to dance and sing along. “Better believe that you can take it or leave. The distance is deceiving and consistence is key. Forever remember timing’s everything. Find a way to break this ball and chain and get away.” There’s a really great breakdown in the middle of the song creating a rad build up for the second half. Bursting with that same speed that we hear from the start, this song really brings the album full circle. It absolutely takes the crown as my favorite track, because I can’t stop smiling and dancing every time I hear it. 

Underwatertown is an impressive debut album and these dudes have a ton of talent. I loved the fact that I felt transported back to the days when I couldn’t get enough of Cartel, The Starting Line, and Taking Back Sunday. Each instrument from the drums to the bass matched the on point vocals throughout the entire album. Bands like Against What’s Best make me excited for the future of punk. Talent is radiating out of these guys and I’m excited to hear more from them in the future. Until then, I’ll be jamming to Underwatertown, which is streaming on all platforms. Be sure to follow the band on all social media platforms for any updates. 

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