Review - Blue Skies, Broken Hearts -- Next 12 Exits

Artist: The Ataris

As Green Day and Rancid moved from the indie scene to the mainstream, they somehow disconnected with their audience, losing the intensely personal relationship that only a punk band can forge. The Ataris are one band that probably won't ever suffer this fate.

"On Blue Skies, Broken Hearts -- Next 12 Exits," bored Midwesterner and bandleader Kris Roe reaches a level of eloquent honesty in his lyrics, a rarity for pop-punkers. Titles like "San Dimas High School Football Rules," "Your Boyfriend Sucks" and "The Last Song I Will Ever Write About a Girl" give you the skinny. This is not some songwriter inventing characters loosely based on real events; this is Roe's diary, full of heartfelt triumphs and heartbroken failures.

The band is a favorite among the Vandals/NOFX/ Lagwagon set, which should clue you in on their talent. If emotional honesty and a lack of posturing is high on your list of expectations, The Ataris will not disappoint.

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