Review / Two New Singles from Broadside



Broadside, a pop-punk band from Richmond, Virginia, released two long-awaited singles: King of Nothing and Empty. Formed in 2010, the five man group has released two albums, two EPs and several singles and was on Alt Press’s list of 100 Artists You Need to Know in 2015. The new singles precede their new album, set to release in 2020. One is about the fear of the future and not achieving your dreams, the other is about a broken heart, but both are fun, dancey, and total bops.

Every band wants to be the best of course, but every band (and person in general) also fears failure. Vocalist Ollie Baxxter weighs his desire to be the best against his fear of never making it in King of Nothing. “We chose this life as touring musicians but it can be painfully lonely,” confesses Baxxter. “We all want to be heard and play to massive crowds while making enough money that our parents won’t worry about our futures. I’m so proud of our accomplishments as a band but some nights, after the show ends and those crowds leave the venue, when you’re in the back seat of a dark van, you feel like you’re not doing enough and those dreams you have become nightmares of what you’ll never achieve. You can be on top of the world and have nothing.” The lines All I wanted was to share my pain/ there’s pieces of me dying but I never want to lose my name sum up the fear of wanting to make a difference through music, or any practice, but not wanting to fail and have to give up. Despite the dark theme in the lyrics, it’s still a jumpy and fun pop punk song with good, throaty, emo vocals. The second song is a much cheesier but much more boppy song about being broken-hearted. You would think that the sad love song would have more of an emo feel, but Baxxter says that he wanted Empty to be “a dance-y song making fun of how unfortunate it is to be in love, sometimes.” The lyrics, however, have almost a “fake deep” feel. The lines Do you wanna fall in love/ Knowing that we’ll fall apart/ So what’s the point of falling in love/ When you always fall too hard? express bitterness towards falling in love, but it’s obvious that he’s poking fun at the subject. The song, in my opinion, is really not a lyrical masterpiece but I don’t think it’s supposed to be; it’s a unique approach to a sad-themed song that’s peppy and fun. Of the two, I definitely prefer King of Nothing; I’d give that song a 7/10. It’s fun to dance to but it’s also lyrically more superior. I would rate Empty 6/10.

Rickie McCanna