Milestones sound like your favourite band.
Exactly like them.
Listening to Red Lights teleports you back to 2007. Mayday Parade are gearing up to release A Lesson in Romantics. Boys Like Girls are making waves with their self-titled debut album. Forever the Sickest Kids have just signed to a label.
This album is being released ten years too late. If it was 2007, this would be a chart-topping release catapulting Milestones to arenas overnight, but Red Lights in 2018 fills you with an inescapable sense of déjà vu. This album is nostalgic, but it doesn’t break any new ground.
If there was a stereotypical pop-punk bingo card, Milestones would easily get a full house.
While that should be a negative thing, if you’re a sucker for cheesy pop-punk then this is the album for you. Borrowing the best bits of The All-American Rejects, You Me at Six and Go Radio, Red Lights feels like listening to your favourite songs for the very first time.
It’s impossible to resist bopping your head or singing along to the various “woah-oh” or “nah-nah-nah” refrains (even on the first listen, because you can feel them coming from a mile away). The unsubtle-innuendo of Eighteen is bound to become a fast fan favourite, vocalist Matt Clarke crooning “You can count on her going down” with an audible smirk.
These tracks will work wonderfully live, because although they sound like previously released songs they’re written extremely well. That’s most apparent on Hold On, which features a surprisingly accomplished guitar solo as the song builds to an explosive crescendo.
Other highlights include Against the World – equipped with a “We are dreamers” chant which is destined to spawn a cult-like fanbase – and This is My Life, featuring a bitterly repeating “You made an enemy” bridge which screams set closer.
If you can’t wait to get your phone out and wave it in the air, piano ballad Counting Cars is the song for you. “A broken heart still beats just twice as slow” begs to be written in the diaries of teenagers across the globe.
A slew of bands have attempted to revive classic pop-punk in the past few years, but none as successfully as Milestones. There’s a reason this sound was so popular in the first place: the songs are all catchy and enjoyable, reminding you why music is a form of escapism for so many. Milestones balance the feels and the fun throughout Red Lights, and although it does verge on generic, it’s a stepping stone to bigger and better future releases.