After the announcement of Yellow Monsters hiatus, I was curious to know what the members would be up to. Yongwon, vocal and guitar, seemed to transition quickly to starting another band. If you heard Yellow Monsters, the music was a mixture of rock and punk. Instead of going in the same direction with his own project, Vancouver is more straight forward punk music. It reminds me a lot of his previous bands like GUMX as well.
Vancouver is ten songs that all follow the same template. The tempo is fast, the songs are a mix between melodic and punk rock. It’s a fun album that is easily accessible from all angles. Yongwon also goes into slower songs with “Last and Forever” which is an acoustic track. It kind of reminds me of the slower Yellow Monsters songs. These set of songs have an older tone to them. The punk rock influences come from the punk rock that I listened to in the last 1990s. But even with a punk base, the album does have a good selection of rock songs. “I Don’t Know Why” could have been a Yellow Monsters song at a different time.
Since so much of my experience with Yongwon has been with Yellow Monsters and GUMX, I hear a lot of the same elements. Vancouver does sound like a transitional album. With some songs, he’s going back to familiar territory and in others he’s trying new things. I think Vancouver is a strong album, but doesn’t stray far from the music he’s used to making. As a progression, it’s slightly here.
Yongwon knows how to make good punk and rock songs. Vancouver is a good example of that. As he comes back with this new band, I’m curious if this is what we should always expect or will there be some growth in a different direction.