Joyride! already have a few full-lengths under their belt — 2011’s I Think You’re Doing It Wrong, 2013’s self-titled, and 2014’s Bodies Of Water — and, over the weekend, the San Francisco trio released a new one called Half Moon Bay, named after a seaside city south of their hometown. It’s a collection of earnest and heartfelt pop-punk songs that fit in nicely with their Salinas Records compatriots like All Dogs, Radiator Hospital, and Swearin’.
On this record, Joyride! have a particularly wistful point of view, and most of the songs chronicle the slow, inevitable decline of a relationship and the sinking feeling that settles in when you realize you’ve stuck around for too long. Jenna Marx starts off with singing a clear-headed definition on the opening track — “How it feels is like a steady build or a subtle loss that you won’t notice ’til your sense of self is gone” — and from there, the album is a ramshackle assortment of memories and mixed feelings. “Running On Empty” recalls a specific conversation about holding on to something that’s gone in an effort to not move forward. “Center Divide” and “Girls Who Wanna Realize Themselves” both make smart use of a metaphor about driving with your eyes closed as a way to gauge each other’s sense of adventure and commitment.
My favorite right now is the shambolic “Hold That Thought,” which contemplates why one’s sense of self-worth is consistently low: “I have always had no love for myself like that’s the obvious conclusion/ Sure that it’s true and I know that it’s sad/ Wonder how I learned to think like that.” Stream the full album below.