We got a hot one here. From Toronto, Ontario, Talk Show Host definitely provides ample announcements with underlying messages of the “fuck you” variety to the public on their latest EP entitled Not Here to Make Friends which dropped on May 19th, 2017. At least, that’s how I interpret their lyrics, and considering that they classify themselves as an indie pop-punk band with such a warm and welcoming EP title, I wouldn’t say that my interpretation transcends the actuality of their message.
Kicking off with an early Blink 182-like guitar riff from their Enema of the State days, these Torontosaurus Rexes present the insurgent vibes pretty fresh in the game. Opening with the lyrics, “My whole world caught fire/ so I built this wall/ concrete curtain call/” on the debut track “Dead Meat” doesn’t exactly suggest cordiality. It’s an EP where the only invitations being sent out are going to those who share the similar experiences of betrayal as these outspoken warriors and who harbor the same kinds of resentment towards their own antagonists.
This EP has the revolt of Bad Religion, the raw punk rock sound of early Green Day, and the vocal tone and angst of Good Charlotte. To clarify, “angst” isn’t meant to describe TSH vocalist Sean’s vocals as sounding whiny, nasally, or full of complaints, but rather to identify its agony brought on by the band’s adversaries.
Although the punk elements are the strongest throughout the EP, we hear the indie vibes occasionally. However, they are most prominent in “I Hate Men (I Hate All Men)” where the vocals have that scratchy tone similar to The Strokes, and the only other instrumentation is bass guitar and the bass drum doing a fun sounding back-and-forth sway with similarities to Green Day’s “Stray Heart.” It’s the song on the EP that brings me the most pleasure, for if my analysis and understanding of the message is correct, it’s kind of a mockery of the exaggerated feminist voice that barges in, uninvitingly, while I’m trying to get hammered in high spirits at a house party; although I am the furthest thing from a male chauvinist, imposing feminists are major downers and therefore I find this song clever and hilarious.
Written by Keenan Kerr
*edited by Kate Erickson