• Hannah Blau

Advance Review - PUP: 'This Place Sucks Ass' EP


(Photo Credit - Jess Baumung)


Advance Review - PUP: This Place Sucks Ass EP (October 23, 2020) on Little Dipper / Rise Records

PUP, made up of Stefan Babcock (lead vocals and guitar), Nestor Chumak (bass), Zack Mykula (drums), and Steve Sladkowski (guitar) is nothing if not chaotic--we heard plenty of evidence of that on their 2019 release, Morbid Stuff. Now, imagine a collection of songs deemed “too dark” to appear on their last album. That, along with one new song written this year, is exactly what the Toronto-based quartet is giving us in the form of their new EP, This Place Sucks Ass. The EP consists of four original songs and a cover of Granddaddy’s “A.M. 180”, recorded during the Morbid Stuff sessions, as well as “Rot”, which was recorded for This Place Sucks Ass and kicks off the track list. 


Babcock jumps right into the twisted darkness from the get-go. “Rot” uses heavy guitar riffs and gruesome lyrical analogies to convey the feelings of self-doubt and the cruel, negative thoughts that can bubble over and take over your life. The catchy, shout-along chorus mixed with the all-too-relatable theme tells me this track will easily become a crowd favorite.


PUP has already released three of the tracks off of their forthcoming EP: “Rot”, “Anaphylaxis”, and their bolder, more punched up version of “A.M. 180”. We also have three brand new, not-yet-released songs to look forward to. Among those is “Floodgates”. Remember that chaotic vibe I mentioned earlier? This song flawlessly embodies that concept. The line “whenever I think of dying it only makes me laugh” is the mindset of many Millennials and Gen Z kids. Not to mention, the heavy hitting percussion from Mykula on this track is not to be ignored.


A slightly softer track off of the EP is “Nothing Changes”, an anthem of bitterness and willful hopelessness. The lyrics are about the pervasive loneliness you feel after someone significant leaves and the way that loneliness can feel long-lasting, especially when you’re trying to ignore it. The tempo change and mellowing of the mood at the bridge almost has one thinking that Babcock could be finding hope for the future.


Overall, This Place Sucks Ass (whose title began as an inside joke, by the way) delivers all of the super doomer energy that we need to match this shit show of a year. 


Rating - 4/5

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