Review: Fandom Proves to be a Stunning Album

Houston-Based Band Waterparks Releases Third Studio Album


Hopeless Records

Following their last album, “Entertainment”, Waterparks has continued to amaze listeners with “Fandom”.

Jordyn Guzman, Co-Editor-In-Chief

Houston-based pop-punk powerhouse band Waterparks is back again with a new album. Awsten Knight is as angry as ever with this one, merging edgy and punk lyrics with peppy electronic beats. I have been a fan of Waterparks for many years, ever since the release of their EP “Cluster”. Personally, I think this is the best album they have put out to date. The fast paced songs and modern electronic influences are more than enough to promise hype at future tours and shows. 

The album opens with “Cherry Red”, a smooth introductory song that showcases all aspects of the band. It feels like a song that the band would blast to the crowd before they walk on stage. It’s relatively short, but it’s more than enough to set the baseline for what listeners can expect on the album. 

Every song has a hint of bitterness laced through it. The lyrics focus almost solely on love and breakups. With this, the album can be divided into categories of emotions: anger, happiness, and sadness over said relationships. Some songs in the “happy” category are “Dream Boy”, and “I Felt Younger When We Met”. As for sadness, “High Definition”, “Never Bloom Again”, and “Worst” are prime examples of Awsten expressing those emotions. “Turbulent”, “Watch What Happens Next”, “Easy To Hate”, and “[Reboot]” are fast paced and exemplify the edgy and agitated tone that Awsten Knight was going for. 

The album is interesting in the sense that the sole theme is love and lost relationships, yet somehow it allows each song to stand apart from the next. Usually, this could be interpreted as repetitive or whiny, but the diversity of sounds presented in the album gives each song its own meaning. 

The transitions from song to song are something to behold. “Group Chat”, while being labeled as a separate song, sits between “Telephone” and “Turbulent”. It is a catchy electronic drum beat with each of the band members talking. It is a weird break up between the songs but it somehow manages to fit and remain constant with the album. Other songs are accompanied by static at the end or old recordings of people talking. The end of “Turbulent” is marked by heavy breathing and the sound of a phone ringing with notifications. These simple sounds at the ends of the songs are enough to add a whole new level of depth and dimension to the album. They add personality and present the next song without it sounding flat. 

Every song on this album hits hard, but some songs that stand out the most are “Turbulent”, “High Definition”, “Telephone”, and “Dream Boy.” This is not the case, however, with the song “[Reboot]”. The backing track flows really nicely, but the style of vocals they decided to go with just doesn’t match. The song does show off Awsten’s lower range spectacularly, but the way he almost raps the lyrics out just does not fit. At times, it’s extremely difficult to understand what he says. The chorus is extremely pretty and pleasing to listen to despite this. The lyrics are impeccable too, making references to “Dream Boy”, and expressing the exact opposite of what that song tries to portray. I personally think that “[Reboot]” is exactly the title. It’s a ‘reboot’ of “Dream Boy”-a new, contrasting idea that’s meant to accompany the other. 

“Fandom” is a truly fantastic album. It shows off all of the band member’s abilities to the highest degrees. It is very cohesive with a solid message and theme that the band members have related back to their own personal lives. This album is arguably the best Waterparks album to date. It has so much personality and emotion fused into all of the tracks and is bound to make a connection with long time fans and new listeners alike.