The turbo charged approach that Austin TX based Thieves have to their pop punk is endearing. The band manage to combine introverted Wonder Years-esque lyrics with an arguably more positive vibe overall, and though – like most of the pop punk bands in the world – they borrow fairly heavily from the bands that came before, ‘Achiever’ is a great listen.
The weirdest bits on the album are the choral (?) moments that appear at the end of the title track and ‘Bioluminescence’ – both seem a little tacked on and pointless initially – but fortunately they’re both followed by big tunes so they’re easily forgiven.
Those slightly out of place moments are explained a little by the concept of the record; it follows a character that became obsessed with success and forgot what’s important (ie. friends that he grew up with and enjoying his youth – pop punk’s arguably greatest virtues), and though there’s some darker parts in the midst, it’s hard to imagine the songs doing anything but putting a big smile on people’s faces when performed live.
There’s plenty to love in ‘Achiever’ – not least in the messages strung through it – but you can’t help but feel that Thieves have another gear or two to go up to. There’s glimpses of a incredible pop punk band throughout, but the slightly scrappy production leaves a little to be desired (though it is a self-release so fair enough), and there’s still scope for the band to craft their own sound from the influences they wear on their collective sleeve. Ther
There’s little doubt that Thieves will turn heads with this release, but in such a strong year of releases the most exciting thing is the potential that they’re displaying. Most certainly a band to watch in the future, and ‘Achiever’ is well worth a listen for any pop punk fan.