Entering a new decade, California-based trio Five North showcases their talents through their debut EP, Scumbag. Together, Tyler Posey (popularly known as Scott from MTV’s Teen Wolf), Kyle Murphy, and Scott Eckel combine their passion for music into this spirited yet melancholic compilation. With the influence of pop-punk and rock at the forefront, the team approached their good friend, musician, and producer John Feldmann to help shape the band’s sound.
Back in February, Five North released their music video for their single “This Mess.” The video is a thriller/slasher themed piece with a parodic tone. The video takes a narrative approach to music video production, allowing for “This Mess” to act as a soundtrack highlighting the video’s story arc. The single in itself is a fervent, pop-punk melody with a heavier tone and pronounced drums, mingling with an electric aesthetic. These traits, meshed with Posey’s pleading, tenor vocals, create a sound reminiscent of the early 2000’s pop-punk era. While this song showcases the intense, punchy side of Five North’s music, the remaining tunes on the EP establish the band’s unique sound.
Opening the collection with the song “Drunk Cat,” the band’s distinctive sound shines through. This fast-paced, buoyant song is accompanied by lighter, acoustic guitar strings. The tune’s introspective, spiteful narrative segues into a series of intimate pieces that possess this zestful, acoustic guitar sound. While Five North’s dominant genre is pop-punk, aspects of their material resemble synth-pop. This characteristic is most prominent in “Happier Now,” whose introduction showcases a jumpy, glittery electronic beat. This song follows the narrator’s journey through stages of ambivalence, resentment, and acceptance with the use of lyrics that blend harmoniously with the song’s emotional and auditory waves.
While songs like “This Mess,” “Drunk Cat,” and “Happier Now” reflect the disorienting, agitating, unnerving side of life, “Echo” possesses a warmer, relaxing tone. This song’s hypnotic repetition of calming acoustic strings and endearing vocals imbues comfort and pensiveness. Through Scumbag, Five North has created a collection of riveting, wistful compositions that are perfect for a rainy day, a dance party, or a relaxing cruise in the car.
Scumbag is currently available on Spotify, Apple Music, and a variety of other platforms.