Christofer Drew, the wunderkind behind emo outfit Never Shout Never, is a grizzled music veteran at the ripe old age of 24. It’s hard to believe, but the rock-solid “Black Cat” is Never Shout Never’s seventh full-length album (and they also dropped a pair of EPs for good measure). Once a one-man show, Never Shout Never have evolved into a full-fledged band and the music is better as a result.
“This is our first fully-realized album,” Drew says of “Black Cat.” “It felt like we had the training wheels on for a long time. I was a lot more open to ideas from other people than I ever have been, which I feel is me hitting a certain maturity level. I had this epiphany that great things come from a lot of great minds coming together, and I was more open this time. I think it’s cool how it turned out; it’s more pop than we expected but I dig it.”
The upbeat nature of “Black Cat” is evident throughout, with “Hey! We OK” and “Fone Tag” setting the tone. Never Shout Never continue to impress on “Red Balloon,” “Post Surrealism,” the title track, “WooHoo” and “All Is Love.”
If you were at last month’s Vans Warped Tour in Burgettstown, chances are you got a taste of the new material during the band’s Main Stage set. For the rest of you, there’s this excellent album. (Jeffrey Sisk)