As staples of the pop punk scene for almost 20 years, The Wonder Years have released six studio albums to date. And with pop punk and emo music reaching new levels of mainstream renown, from Machine Gun Kelly to Olivia Rodrigo to tremendous excitement for My Chemical Romance’s first new music in a decade, news of a new album from The Wonder Years is very welcome. The single, “Summer Clothes” explores nostalgia in this soft ode to the days when nothing mattered in the best and worst ways possible.
The simple acoustic guitar accompanying Dan “Soupy ” Campbell’s voice sets course for a melancholy ballad about the summers that have passed. Singing “but I hate myself a little less when the salt air hits my skin,” he conjures memories of the somewhat off-putting yet comforting smell of the shore. Later, “Sat on the benches when the shops had closed; saw the ferris wheel light through your Marlboro smoke” transports you to the boardwalk after hours, with nothing really to do but sit around.
“It’s a love letter to a time when your sadness was most conspicuous by its momentary absence,” explained Campbell in a press release. ”When the low hum quieted enough for you to realize it was nearly gone, when you did stupid, dangerous shit because, well, why not?”
The introspective acoustic guitar and minimal melody range gives way to a grandiose chorus. A steady marching snare comes in to build the song to its peak with Campbell hitting an emotional high on the very last word bringing the song to an abrupt end.
“Summertime Clothes” and the previous single “Oldest Daughter” will be appearing on The Wonder Years’ sevent yet-to-be-named studio album, slated to release later this year. While they do not have any shows scheduled in Philadelphia right now, they are playing at Riot Fest in Chicago which takes place from September 16th through the18th and the When we were Young festival in Las Vegas on September 22nd, 23rd, and 29th.