Yellowcard Ocean Avenue (EMI/Capitol) Rating NNN
Shtick is so underrated. There's a certain amount of drive to this offering from Jacksonville emo-pop punk bunch Yellowcard, some neat guitar sounds as well as some nice arrangements. But without the string arrangements, they might be indistinguishable from the 16 billion emo-pop punk bands out there. But they do have the strings, which makes 'em just a little special. Ocean Avenue boasts a violin, viola and cello as well as a piano, and they lend a whole new element to a sound that many of us were already sick to death of last decade. Some of the fiddling is quite good, and the band are at their best when they add a little country to the mix. They should do that more often. Yellowcard mess up the Opera House with Eve 6 and Jersey tonight (Thursday, January 29).