From their fast-paced, grungy take on “99 Red Balloons” to their classic ska-punk bangers like “Here In Your Bedroom” and “Answers,” we’ve had a very steady and consistent delivery from the LA-born band Goldfinger throughout the years. The band’s recent album Never Look Back, released December 4th, 2020, was the exclamation point at the end of everyone’s “goodbye” to 2020. The album provided comfort in the form of great current music that both incorporated newness and familiarity, leaving you to reminisce back to the first Goldfinger song you ever jammed to. Whereas a lot of bands that stick to their usual accents tend to disappoint the masses who expect something both new and uniquely extraordinary, Never Look Back – for the most part – had the opposite effect. Its closeness to the band’s past hits is what truly shaped it into being something that’s enjoyable from start to finish.
Kicking it off quite phenomenally, “Infinite” had set an excitable tone for the rest of the album with its instant quickness and classic ska tempo. Following this incredible start to the album, right when you’re about to sit down and wait for another gem to approach, the very next song “The City” kindly asks you to stand back up and dance around with its treasure box of softened brass instruments and its overall feeling of cozy wanderlust. If you ever decide to take a road trip, playing “The City” will only add to your feeling of free-spiritedness and joy.
Fans of Escape The Fate‘s “Ashley,” will find themselves instantly enjoying “California On My Mind,” as the lyrics are sung in a similar rhythmic fashion in both songs (though noticeably bouncier and slower-paced in Goldfinger’s content). Escape The Fate sang “shadows fall on yesterday, it’s like time just slips away” and Goldfinger sang “rolled up to the liquor store on Diamond Street, skated down the pavement to the palm trees.” These are both great spots to pinpoint the similarities – a lot of songs utilize this popular rhythm, so listeners will probably find themselves discovering their own personal Deja Vu’s with the album’s eighth song. The album is decorated with this consistent feeling of nostalgia, probably because of their use of familiar instrumental patterns from various well-known and highly enjoyed classics – definitely a “cherry on top” scenario!
Unfortunately, with the exception of the lyrical hilarity of “Dumb” and the sweetness of “Standing On The Beach,” the rest of the album was just a tad bit forgettable. The beautifully balanced mix of that previously mentioned familiarity and newness became the repetitive sound that listeners dread to hear from their favorite artists. “Cannonball” and “Golden Days” are great examples of this. The two separate songs hardly stand on their own and seemingly mesh together, feeling like one very long song – an unfortunate result of the two being directly next to each other on the album. In spite of this disappointment, however, Never Look Back as a whole is still a joy to listen to and consists of undeniable classics.