"This is Blink, isn't it?" asked my father as he heard the sprightly, syrupy rendition of 'In Too Deep'. I was about to tell him it was Sum 41, but then I, too, paused.
Personally I don't like the Blink/Sum 41 comparison that many people seem to like making. But it is hard not to. They are in the same brattish, fast-beat, and overall loud genre that is modern-day punk.
What's good about Sum 41 is that they manage to differentiate themselves from many other bands. The foursome manage to make themselves stand out from the crowd in merely their physical actions (watch the 'Fat Lip' video, included with 'All Killer' for good examples of that).
The fact that Bizzy D and Brown Sound don't seem to be able to sing very well doesn't put them off whatsoever. They riff their way through typical kiddish lyrics with no shame at high and powerful speeds, with Stevo32 banging away in the background, seemingly unaware of everything going on around him.
Which is what music should be.
Unlike Wheatus who perform with precision, but sing the wrong songs, Sum41 sing the perfect songs. 'Fat Lip' is the anthem of kids who wish to remain how they are. 'In Too Deep' is teen angst presented in an amusing, fast-paced way, and the opening number 'Nothing on my Back' is truly what it should be: a real welcoming, exciting number.
The result of Sum41's endeavours (even if they didn't try hard!) is a dizzy rush through a world of curious but enjoyable pop-punk.
And that's the sort of thing they enjoy doing.