“Cheeky Heart”
CD, digital


Pop punk for a new generation: City Kids Feel The Beat torch a firework of rousing college anthems and entertaining guitar riffs on their debut album “Cheeky Heart” between unbridled joie de vivre and escapism from reality. Carried by youthful optimism as well as mature songwriting, the five from the south presents us with a contemporary mix of pop-rock, party and melodic hardcore borrowings, which gives fans of Zebrahead, Anti-Flag or Neck Deep their money’s worth and transforms the Swabian hinterland into a sunny, Californian punk Mecca.

“Cheeky Heart” marks a new section for City Kids Feel The Beat: With the new producer Benny Hermann from the production environment of Cro and Casper, the band started the project debut album at the beginning of the year. The result was a gripping, refreshing and, above all, musically grown punk album with a teen attitude that sets out on the road to artistic self-determination in songwriting. “We have oriented ourselves to the sound of our role models and favourite bands as well as to the whole thing with our new, personal stamp,” says frontman Sven. Vital guitar riffs, beats whipping forward and irresistibly sweetened choruses stick to the ear and don’t leave it again so quickly – all this breathes the spirit of recognized scene greats and makes “Cheeky Heart” an extraordinary album, which doesn’t have to hide in international comparison.

Thematically, it follows on from the previous EPs “KIDS” and “Stories”, but condenses the inner anarchy on the threshold of adolescence to adulthood as an inventory of the maturing process: “Most of the album is a puked-up emotional chaos”, singer Sven remembers the writing process. “It was good to sing everything from the soul that stirred me up: the power-sapping interplay of failure and a new beginning, the social ephemerality that makes my whole generation look at the world in uncertainty at the moment. As part of the youth of a messed up world, City Kids Feel The Beat oscillates between awakening and repression.

“Actually, our hearts scream to denounce grievances in society, but sometimes we lack the belief that we can really make a difference. This album is the product of our efforts not to close our eyes and the ubiquitous tendency to flee into our music.” This dichotomy becomes clear in “Balls Of The Dragon”, for example, which captures the desolate state of our world: “There’s a lot of darkness in this world/so much trouble, so much pain”.

As a balance, of course, their enthusiasm for the fun and the ravishing in love should not be missing, for example in college rock ballads like “What I Can’t Get” or the title track, whose theme singer Sven describes as follows: “The song ‘Cheeky Heart’ is about the omnipresent conflict between heart and head, in which the ‘cheeky heart’ finally keeps the upper hand. “That’s Why” deals with the elation of a live show that makes up for all tour bus loneliness, and “Life” humorously sums up the ups and downs of everyday life: “Life is a bitch/But she is fucking hot”. The band manages, as on the past records, to deal with all these topics in the same way with all clarity, without falling too much into melancholy – in the end there is always a hopeful conclusion.

City Kids Feel The Beat have been writing their own history for some time now. Ambition and an immense self-commitment have always characterized the band and brought them to the point where they are now. As “1 of the 10 European Pop-Punk Bands you need to know” (Alternative Press) the quintet already played as support for the Donots and Hollywood Undead. With a new team around the band a new wind is blowing, which frontman Sven confidently lets look into the future: “We are ready to take the next big steps of our band history – we are ready for the stages of the republic and beyond”. With “Cheeky Heart” City Kids Feel The Beat make the biggest step in the band’s history with a thoroughly mature and balanced sound – their maturing process may not be finished yet, but the debut album “Cheeky Heart” is a great future.