By Kristen Cloyed, Contributor
Go Radio may be new to the music scene, but front man Jason Lancaster is a veteran when it comes to writing explosive songs that catch the ears of music fans everywhere. The singer and guitarist, formerly of Mayday Parade fame, knows how to write an album that will stick. Go Radio’s first full-length album, “Lucky Street,” is a perfect taste of pop rock.
The title track opens the album with the sound of sirens, almost warning listeners of the coming greatness. The drums kick in, the guitars rip to life and Lancaster eases his way through one of his signature infectious choruses. “Any Other Heart” keeps the tempo up with a theme of revenge. Lancaster wails through the verses as heavy guitars back him up like a musical army.
As a songwriter, Lancaster is almost as good as they come. He has a way with words rarely seen in the music business these days. With his use of storytelling, imagery and attention to detail, it’s almost as if he were writing a novel instead of an album.
“Swear It Like You Mean It” is an example of the emotion heard in Lancaster’s writing: “Cause I’ve been thinking about tragedy/And how it’s been my company/I’ve kept to keep me seamlessly intact/In spite of everything.”
The album explores many different sounds. “Singing With the Kings” has a summer anthem feel. The lyrics mention several musical legends including Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Keith Moon and Carly Simon. “Strength to Stay” is a track with a sinister sound and “Fight, Fight (Reach For The Sky)” has a Latin flavor backed by horns and a spirited guitar.
“Lucky Street” is often up-tempo and fast-paced, but a few ballads are thrown in to break up the monotony. The piano-driven “Why I’m Home” is emotional and eloquent. Lancaster’s vocals are showcased in lines like “I just don’t think that this will be easy/Saying that you love me/When lying tongues are clumsy.”
“House of Hallways” is an inspirational tune about staying strong under pressure. Lancaster strikes a love-struck note in lyrics like “On the list of everything I need/There’s air, but first there’s you and me/There’s love and, love, you’re everything.” The slower tracks will stick with you long after the music stops.
One of the best tracks on “Lucky Street” is “Kill the Beast.” The song features a heavy bass line, strong drums and gritty guitars leading up to a catchy chorus.
The coarse “Redemption in the Verse” is about believing in something larger than life. Lancaster’s vocals are strong and steady as he sings “Chins up, it’s all gonna clear up/There’s a place where we belong/You see the sky can’t be this gray forever/Just fill your head with something clever.”
“Hold On” is another motivational track, but with a faster tempo. The beginning features an acoustic guitar to start and an electric guitar picks up the speed halfway through.
“Lucky Street” includes two versions of “Forever My Father,” a song written and recorded for Lancaster’s father immediately after his viewing. The original version features Lancaster’s siblings, Erin and Daniel. The rerecorded version has a better sound quality, but the emotion in the original track cannot be recreated. The song is a touching tribute and a perfect close to the album.
At 14 tracks, the album is long but well worth a listen. “Lucky Street” is sure to please old fans and attract new ones. Fans, both young and old, can catch Go Radio live as they play Warped Tour this summer.