First Base - Not That Bad - LP (2017)

Labels: Drunken Sailor
Review by: Alex Deller

Came in cold knowing zip about First Base when I gave this a go on Bandcamp, but was sold within the first minute or so. In case you’re as ignorant as me, they deal in bittersweet power pop with enough of a punk rock edge to stop things getting too gooey. Marked Men, Cheap Trick and Exploding Hearts are all fair points of reference, though you could be even more reductive and just say the Ramones minus the hard living and hard drugs. While I could’ve done without the ABBA cover and ‘This Guitar Of Mine’ prompts the occasional eye roll if I’m in a particularly sour frame of mind everything else is golden, with tracks like ‘Sandra’ and ‘Not That Bad’ briskly along in a manner that’s smart, catchy and outlandishly endearing.