Remember Sports: Like a Stone (Father/Daughter) - review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Tuesday, October 3rd, 2023  

Remember Sports

Like a Stone


Apr 22, 2021 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

Since their 2012 inception, Remember Sports (formerly known simply as Sports) have evolved from a scrappy college project to a brilliant indie punk combo in its own right. The biggest step in that shift came in 2018 with a change of lineup, a new rebranded name, and a relocation from Gambier, Ohio to Philadelphia, all accompanying the band’s 2018 record Slow Buzz. This second phase of the band’s life took them out of college basement shows and put them on the path of ambitious indie punk touring acts such as Jeff Rosenstock or Joyce Manor. Like a Stone expands those horizons even further, seeing the band return in peak form.

While the band built their name in frenetic indie punk, delivered via Carmen Perry’s distinctive scratchy vocals, Like a Stone feels like the band’s most surefooted deviations from that formula yet. The title track opens like many other Remember Sports songs, bursting open with Perry’s vocals and a cleanly strummed guitar intro. But right when the band would normally explode into motion, they settle on some spacey synth tones, only hitting the band’s signature indie punk style in the chorus. Elsewhere on “Materialistic,” the anxious acoustic midpoint of the record, the band breaks the fragile instrumentation wide open with an off-kilter guitar solo from guitarist Jack Washburn.

Small section changes like these dot the album, bringing newfound variety into the band’s normally unwavering punk pace. The band follows these changes down some winding new genre roads, including some detours through Nashville with the easygoing honky-tonk feel and Perry’s drawing vocals on “Odds Are.” Slow Buzz offered hints of that sense of adventure, but the meandering explorations are better fleshed out here and make for some of the band’s best songs.

The record’s high point comes near the close as the band stretches out the penultimate track, “Out Loud” into nearly seven-minute territory, easily their longest track yet. While that length could work to the detriment of the song, it gives the band’s songwriting more space to breathe than ever before. The band treads forward over a slinking jangly instrumental, trading vocal duties over easy going bongo overdubs, sliding synth lines, a gorgeous climactic high note from Perry, and a gently whispered acoustic outro.

Yet, Remember Sports have not abandoned the storming punk of their college days. Some of the album’s best moments come from the nimble bass riffing of “Flossie Dickie” and the tight ripping amphetamine pace of “Falling Awake” and “Easy.” In fact, “Pinky Ring” opens the album with a track as hook-filled and propulsive as any they’ve produced yet. Similarly, while the performances are a little more polished and the recording a little cleaner, the band still has the disarming ramshackle energy that made Sunchokes shine. Touches like the occasional sour guitar note on “Sentimentality” or Perry’s sneering punk vocals add a familiar honest element and keep the record inviting and unassuming.

Perry’s writing also makes for some of her most resonant work yet. Her lens has often looked inward, following Perry as she explores her inner world but it takes on new depths on Like a Stone. Perry grapples with herself, hoping to find new self-loving ways of being as she excavates frustrated lyrical meditations. She seemingly begs to herself on “Easy,” “Do something right/Just do anything right,” offering an unexpectedly cutting refrain of self-doubt.

Other reflections rummage through the wreckage of a breakup, a familiar subject for the band. But when Perry explores back into this territory, it’s often equally diaristic and insular. On “Clocks” she confesses, “I’m not fooling anyone/Take these little pains/Build them up into an arsenal/When you go away/You were never mine to keep here/I’m not taking things too well.” These confessions may come from Perry but they’re brought to roaring life by the band at large, hitting raw emotional heights the band has only hinted at before.

On a few occasions Remember Sports have talked about how they never expected to break out of their college scene, expecting that first record to stay as a fun college memory between friends. The band have obviously come a long way since those early days, turning from a well-kept local secret to one of the rising voices in the indie punk scene. Like a Stone continues that winning streak, building on an invigorating sense of artistic progression while never losing the heartfelt warmth of the band’s early albums. Thankfully, the band haven’t grown past their college punk sneer too much. Though Remember Sports may not be playing basements anymore, they still sound like they’re having a great time. Like a Stone continues to deliver on the band’s perennial promise of adrenaline-fueled melodic punk and passionate communal joy. (

Author rating: 8/10

Rate this album
Average reader rating: 10/10


Submit your comment

Name Required

Email Required, will not be published


Remember my personal information
Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

There are no comments for this entry yet.