It’s doubtful that Flint, MI’s The Swellers know how to disappoint. In the short but sweet new Vehicle City Blues 7”, they blend meaningful lyrics with quality punk music. I feel they stand on their own with both indie and punk rock on the new song “Vehicle City Blues.” With a strum of the guitar, it starts out with a calming effect that could have branched fully into indie territory, but instead brings an onslaught of punk to the ears. Nick Diener’s vocals serve as the main driving point of the single and they just have that certain tone that can put anyone who’s listening in a good mood.
Going for a ’90s punk rock style is the other song on the record titled “Red Lights.” It wouldn’t sound too out of place on a Tony Hawk soundtrack, with the catchy guitar riffs and positive attitude. Soon to be a skater’s mixtape staple for the coming years, “Red Lights” is one of my favorites from their catalog and I hope to see this B-side in their live shows. The whoa-ahs at the end help complete the nostalgic value of the 7”, sealing in that awesome tone.
Being their first release since leaving Fueled By Ramen, The Swellers know how to really delve into their past and bring out the best in their musicianship, showing their fans that they have not diminished by any means. This needs to be in the vinyl collection of all Swellers fans.