First and foremost, I need to address the genre that I have labeled this. You see, it’s really impossible to put Sharks into a box. From sounding punk, to pop, to ska, to retro, No Gods really doesn’t fit into just one easily definable category. With all this variety, there isn’t a dull moment in the whole album. This highly anticipated debut full-length was well worth the wait, and somehow manages to top everything that Sharks has put out thus far.
This is one of the few bands nowadays that has genuine crossover appeal, but that’s no surprise considering the variety of bands they’ve already played with ranges from Gallows to Fucked Up to The Gaslight Anthem. Sharks’ strongest asset is easily how versatile and likable they are, and No Gods truly showcases that.
This album genuinely gets better and better with each listen. “Patient Spider” is easily one of the best songs on the album, with “Arcane Effigies” not far behind. Both of these songs manage to be catchy and memorable without compromising their uniqueness, making them perfect to be played over and over. “Patient Spider” in particular shines both lyrically and instrumentally. From the catchy hooks to the intricate metaphors, this track pretty much has it all.
“Til the Wonders Rise” and “Matthew’s Baby” are both very catchy, with the former being the most poppy track on the album. “Dawn Soft Light” is another strong track with an extremely infectious hook, much like “What Entails” which is great from the start and is rather reminiscent of early Third Eye Blind.
Overall, No Gods is full of track after track of upbeat, lighthearted, fun anthems that came right in time for the warm weather. With jams like “Luck,” I can’t help but picture myself blasting this album with my windows down while driving to the beach. The album truly doesn’t miss a beat and has that summer-breezy likability that you just can’t deny.
In the past, Sharks have shined as a very accessible punk band; with No Gods, they have become even more accessible and shed that punk label even more. If anything, they sound like a fusion of ’70s punk and modern pop punk. And, yes, this album sounds more poppy than their previous releases. But they have huge potential and huge crossover appeal, so it’s easy to imagine there will be huge things in their future. With a debut like this, I can’t wait to see what’s still in store for Sharks.