The Quebec-based Ninjas and Aliens caused a major hit of nostalgia for me. From the opening track of “Come Together” I instantly thought I was listening to MxPx, namely because the lead vocalist (Joel) sounds so much like Mike Herrera. The nostalgia ended though as I started to uncover Ninjas and Aliens’ sound was theirs and theirs alone.
You have a mix of skate punk and some other 90s punk influences, but what really stands out is the instrumental work. The bass tone is fantastic, the drums really pop in the mix, and the guitars are crunchy and delicious. What I really love, especially as a punk musician with a penchant for guitar solos, is that Ninjas and Aliens really embrace the concept of the guitar solo. Not every punk act really engages in truly definable solos, but I am glad that these guys break that mold and dive head first into something that sets them apart.
The songs themselves are very much about relationships, and as such, they are very relatable. Within the large sphere that is pop punk, the songs fit the mold quite well and that is perfectly fine. I couldn’t find much wrong with this album, and from somebody like me who tends to be hyper-critical; that is saying a lot. Outside of one odd semi-rap portion in a track that didn’t fit well, “Come Together” is worth your time. I promise.