Monday 22 December 2014


GenresPop-Punk / Skate Punk / Rock / Emo / Indie
Related artistsYearly, Saves The Day, Peter TohTeachers and Classic Case.
CountryLong Island, New York USA
Years Active1999-2002
Song: "King of Coronas"
Album: "Masquerade in the Key of Crime"
Year: 2000
Label(s): Equal Vision Records / Elkion Records
This post's artist is from the December 2014 Mix. This is track #11.
You can download the December Mix#12 right here or get the new January 2015 Mix#1 here.
For fans of: Saves The Day, The June Spirit, The Story So Far, The Starting Line, Sinclair, The Get Up Kids, New Found Glory, The Used, Moneen, The Movielife and Over It.

Back in about 2000 I was desperately searching for anything that sounded even remotely like Saves The Day. It was a difficult task at the time, but I was able to find a select few. Among them was THE STRYDER from Long Island, New York.

There are a few tracks on this cd that are straight-up early skate/pop-punk gems. "11/11" in particular is fantastic, with start/stop guitars and vocals that are extremely reminiscent of Chris Conley's earlier work in Saves The Day, and by golly that is one catchy-ass chorus. "Got You Last" should not be missed either, as it has some seriously infectious pop-punk vocals that are naked and bare, with no effects or manipulation - he just sings that way. The palm-muted guitars that follow the first chorus of "Bang, bang! I got you last." just before the one-minute mark pull me in every time. "Sucker" is a decent track that takes more of the rock approach with vocals that are on the brink of breaking but never quite do, and one might even compare that strain to the For The Mathematics' vocalist. Granted, the lyrics aren't always the greatest, but I was in high school so I didn't care at the time.

THE STRYDER also have two superb slower songs, the first of which being the band's strongest "King of Coronas". This five and a half minute song is the most varied and ballsy that the band wrote. It swings back and forth between slow parts, palm muted transitions and grand alternative/emo rock that borders indie rock more than skate or pop-punk. Seriously, this is a beautiful track that I can jam daily even after all these years. If the band was a Saves The Day clone, this song in particular showed the depth and originality that the band was capable of. The second track I was hinting at is the album's piano-harnessed closer, aka the title track "Masquerade in the Key of Crime". At 8:33 it's long by conventional standards for pop-punk, skate-punk or punk in general, I'd say. That doesn't stop it from lulling me in with some nice piano work (and no other instrumentation) as well as some decently written lyrics that rise and fall with the keys.

I vaguely remember checking out the next album and being unimpressed, but perhaps that's because I started my screamo phase in 2002. Aha, I just read that they parted ways with their initial vocalist and "debuted a new sound" - so yeah, I definitely didn't dig it.

And there you have it. "Masquerade in the Key of Crime" is really amazing for what it is, especially remembering how few bands could actually do this 15 years ago, let alone today. Man, some pop/skate-punk is just fucking great. not.



2000 - Masquerade in the Key of Crime cd/12"LP (download here)
2000 - The Hits Just Keep On Comin' 7"

2002 - Jungle City Twitch cdLP

2004 - Savor the Danger ??? (collection of demos and stuff)


(2000) THE STRYDER - "King of Coronas" (from 'Masquerade in the Key of Crime')

(2000) THE STRYDER - "11/11" (from 'Masquerade in the Key of Crime')

(2000) THE STRYDER - "Got You Last" (from 'Masquerade in the Key of Crime')


THE STRYDER mp3 download for MITKOC

(download here)

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