Every year rock bands reform. However, few such acts follow a reunion jaunt with an album that is up with their best work.
The Get Up Kids prove to be the exception with ‘There Are Rules,’ which dropped last month.
The disc, their first since splintering five-years ago, is filled with rousing, earnest pop-rock, which is right up with the Get Up Kids high-water mark, the aptly titled, ‘Something To Write Home About.’
The 1999 disc is the reason the Get Up Kids reunited. “We thought it would be fun to mark the tenth anniversary of ‘Something To Write Home About,’ vocalist-guitarist Matthew Pryor says while calling from his Lawrence, KS home. “The big thing for me and the rest of the band was when this concept came up that there was no pressure. None of us needed to get back in this band. We’ve all been making a living doing other things.”
Pryor is part of The New Amsterdams, guitarist Jim Suptic performs with Blackpool Lights and keyboardist James Dewees is still involved with Reggie and The Full Effect.
The sibling rhythm section of bassist Rob Pope and drummer Ryan Pope run Black Lodge Studios.
“It’s good we have other things going on,” Pryor says. “That worked well for us when we got back together. There was a looseness during our tour. We had a lot of fun.”
The good times during the 2009 tour inspired a return to the studio. While playing a festival in Belgium and downing many local brews, the idea of a new Get Up Kids album was floated.
“That was probably the best place to bring up such a concept,” Pryor says. “I said that if we could write ten songs in ten days, total punk rock style, that we could put an album together.”
The Get Up Kids failed to match Pryor’s demand but they came close. Nine songs were written in ten days. The group wrote nine more cuts within two weeks and the Get Up Kids had more than enough material for a new project.
“Putting this album together was a real natural thing for me,” Pryor said. “You have to realize that when we broke up, it wasn’t as if we hated each other. We just needed a break from each other. We enjoyed each other’s company the first time around and we enjoy each other’s company this time around.”
But there is no guarantee the Get Up Kids, which will perform Friday and Saturday at the Theater of Living Arts, will stay together after their tour ends in Lawrence mid-March.
“Who knows what we’ll do next,” Pryor says. “Nothing has been planned out. There are no guarantees what will be done next. We’re just living in the moment and that worked for us when we got back together and when we made this album. There’s no reason to deviate from that plan.”