Album Review: Wrecking Crew Red Panda Bears - Year of the Red Panda

I don't always like doing reviews for music. Usually you do one review and then the "label" or "manager" sends over 16 more albums of all their friends and I just cut off the reviews for six months. I'm at that point right now, but Dom, insisted I check out this group called Wrecking Crew Red Panda Bears and I just had to do it because, I mean, that name raises questions. What kind of music is a group with that name going to make? On top of that, I head over to Google and the first thing I see is this little chibi-like red panda. At this point I was certain Dom was messing with me and this would be The Wiggles. Well, I was wrong, very wrong. If you don't want to read the whole review, just know they're dope.

I expected some bubbly pop music and that just wasn't what I got. I honestly wouldn't even start to place them solidly in one genre. The obvious elements of hip hop and punk rock that stand out. On top of that there's a few electronic elements and even a little funk. The Year of The Red Panda EP features only seven tracks but it's a nice mix of content. Nothing is going to sound like anything else and it doesn't lean too heavy toward one genre so it's a really good listen. You get tracks like "On Top of The World and You Deserve It," "Prince Vegeta Freestle," and "Rain Dance" that sound nothing alike. Yet, they're all great songs.

There's different kinds of songs so the lyrical content varies. Tracks like "Rain Dance" don't have nearly the same amount of lyrics as "I Cannot Lose." It's a good method because there's nothing super heavy handed that you need to digest. Sure there's plenty of lyrics on tracks like "Prince Vegeta," but you're not going to breaking out a pen, pad, dictionary and cryptography book like you're trying to break down a Kendrick Lamar verse. Despite that there's still cool lyrics like:
Another sad story the king dies a prince
Get it? Because Vegeta refered to himself as the Prince of All Saiyans, but there was no king. He was the king and he died a Prince, that's clever. Maybe I'm just super nerdy but I see what you did there and I like it a lot. Vocally there's going to be a lot different styles you hear. You're going to hear some some aggression, some ballads and some stuff in between. For a seven track EP there's a lot of range.

There's not real rhyme or reason to how the tracks are assembled, but that's okay. You don't really need a theme or core concept when it's just seven tracks. You also don't have to lie about it like Kanye West, and make up some random nonsense. At the end of the day you're gonna be bobbing your head at different speeds through all seven tracks so it doesn't matter.

Usually at this point I discuss which songs I dislike and why. But I don't have any. I like them all. If I had to pick one it's the radio edit of "You Deserve it," because I like the long version. It's not even bad. I just like long songs. As for favorite song, it's a hard choice. In the end, I'm going to have to go with "Rain Dance," because it's just so different than a lot of the music I hear all the time. Then there's this moment at about 1:55 in where you think the song is coming to an end but then it kicks into high gear. It just feels like an epic song that would play in the final showdown of a modern western.
You're just going to have to listen to the music to get a vibe for it. I can't really make any comparisons to any other groups out there. Maybe Gym Class Heroes, for the fact that they're giving you a bunch of different genres and they're pretty good at all of them. But even that comparison falls short because they sound nothing like Gym Class Heroes and even if you're someone like me, who liked Gym Class Heroes, you know those albums had a lot of filler. You don't get any of that here. It's short and every track gets right to the point. Even when they let the beat build or just jam through an intro they still get to the point. You're not going to be waiting for five minutes wondering if there's lyrics. My only issue would be that it just isn't long enough but for a first EP you can't ask for better.

You should buy Darrell's Book, watch him on the Blerds Online YouTube Channel or The CP Time and Powerbomb Jutsu podcasts. 
Album Review: Wrecking Crew Red Panda Bears - Year of the Red Panda Album Review: Wrecking Crew Red Panda Bears - Year of the Red Panda Reviewed by Blerds Online on Tuesday, July 10, 2018 Rating: 5

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