Hailing from Brighton, England, pop-punk newcomers As It Is played their first show in America three months ago at The Orpheum in Tampa. “For any UK pop-punk band, to play anywhere in America, is a dream,” lead singer Patty Walters told the Catalyst. “It was beyond our expectations, and we had a brilliant freaking time.” In that short time, the band finished that extensive nationwide tour, announced their place on Warped Tour 2015, and released their debut album “Never Happy, Ever After.”
During a time when pop-punk is slowly creeping its way into mainstream media, the quintet have set themselves up for a promising career. The first UK band signed to Fearless Records, As It Is recorded “Never Happy, Ever After” in Florida with producer James Paul Wisner, also credited on works by The Academy Is… and Paramore.
Without being hackneyed and trite, “Never Happy, Ever After” seamlessly cements the band’s pop-punk image. The contrast of the dual singers’ vocals creates a unique dynamic that adds an extra layer of interest to each song. While different, guitarist Benjamin Biss’ more powerful tone complements Walter’s higher pitch. The album possesses a satisfying variety of tempos, ranging from some upbeat moments to slower, more relaxed melodies. Centerpiece tracks such as “Concrete” and “Drowning Deep in Doubt” represent that variety and fuel As It Is’ potential to use this album as a jumping off point for more complex efforts in the future. A clear outlier, “My Oceans Were Lakes” was a daring move by the band, but added depth that the record needed. After a few listens, it is nearly impossible not be tapping and singing along to “Dial Tones,” the “Never Happy, Ever After” highlight.
Warped Tour-ready, As It Is is basically primed to be embraced by the scene. They combine classic pop-punk tendencies, a forward-thinking attitude, British accents, and a solid debut album to build the sturdy base to their successful future.