Not Without a Fight was released in early 2009, a year in which the intersection between pop-punk and emo-pop had become impossibly crowded with young, fresh-faced bands looking to funnel their adolescence into hit records. Pitted against that age bracket, New Found Glory ran the risk of appearing far too old to play this sort of music, the bulk of which caters to teenaged audiences in the first place. Not Without a Fight is par for the pop-punk course, though, receiving its biggest boosts from producer Mark Hoppus (who, at the age of 30, was still wooing high-school students during blink-182's glory days) and the mature performance of frontman Jordan Pundik, who sounds less nasal here than on previous records. Unrequited love is still Pundik's subject of choice, and he peppers the songs with angry allusions to breakup letters, broken hearts, and unanswered phone calls. Unlike his younger pop-punk contemporaries, though, Pundik no longer seems smitten with the idea of a happy relationship; there are precious few traces of the urgent, here's-to-the-night ethos that other groups champion so heartily. There are also precious few singles here, with nothing approaching the radio-geared playability of "My Friends Over You" -- although "Listen to Your Friends," with its syncopated guitars and ever-present harmonies, does come close. Taken as a whole, Not Without a Fight is a smartly balanced album: mature in its outlook, and happily adolescent in most everything else.
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Not Without a Fight based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
In my opinion, Coming Home was New Found Glory's most mature and pleasant-to-listen-to album because of the variety of subjects contained in the lyrics. It was about falling in love, getting married, having a family together, the death of family members, etc. It appeared as though the band was growing up at least in terms of life experience. Not Without a Fight seems to be a step backwards into a typical pop-punk breakup album that was intended for high schoolers. I'm not sure if that means one of the members' marriages has deteriorated or if they just wanted a less-cheery sounding album but either way it almost sounds not genuine in its messages. Am I really supposed to believe that in a band where at least 3 members were (are?) married that "I called you 46 times and you answered on the 47th"? I expected to find a record much more like Coming Home and less like Sticks and Stones and I was fairly disappointed. I know others will feel differently for that exact comparison but personally I liked the direction the band was going in before and feel like Coming Home was recorded by a different (better) band altogether.