Any band with a Seinfeld reference for a name is ok with me. The Penske File is made up of child hood friends James Hall, Travis Miles and Alexander Standen, who have been playing together as a unit for half their lives. The band cites their new upcoming album this July ‘Half Glow’ on Stomp Records as an effort that had many obstacles in the way, “robberies, burn outs, pandemics and many things stood in the way of its completion”. ‘Half Glow’, an album that guitarist and vocalist Travis Miles describes as an "exploration of love, loss and coming of age in a world that often feels like it is crumbling to bits around you.”
Some of the bands that The Penske File cites as influential of this new album are The Gaslight Anthem, PUP, Against Me!, The Menzingers, and Hot Water Music. The first single “Chorus Girl” has an anthemic feel to it with a big rock n’ roll chorus. As the backing vocals melodically repeat “Chorus Girl” as the main vocal focuses on more blue collar lyrics kind of in the vein of Springsteen with even a nod to Tom Petty in the line, “ Your dad’s classic rock collection And I know your favourite disc It’s an old Tom Petty classic.” Musically the song jumps into what feels like the biggest part of the song right at the start, so if you listen to it back to back it almost seamlessly just feels like a continuous song with no beginning. This one isn’t much for dynamics as it feels like the climax of the album as it’s energetic from beginning to end with hardly a sparse moment.
What I can appreciate about The Penske File is it seems they have their own sound down and although it crosses over with artists like The Gaslight Anthem who are notoriously inspired by Springsteen, this feels more well rounded and influenced by a variety of Americana classic rockers from Petty to U2 but mixed with the modern influence of bands like Against Me! but with a little main stream in there like Foo Fighters or The Killers. It’s definitely a sound that has popped up over the last few decades in bands like All American Rejects and Motion City Soundtrack, a polished blend of rock and punk. Looking forward to the LP which drops on July 21st!