This Is Only A Test
Asian Man Records 
Fire Note Says: Smoking good!
The Smoking Popes have always been an extremely fun band to listen to and even though it has been 16 years since their debut record, the band finds themselves sounding as youthful and free spirited as ever on their first album in 3 years, titled This Is Only A Test. Part of this energy can be credited to the album's overall concept, which finds the tracks being delivered through the eyes of a teenager, while they tackle having mono, young love, contemplating college, and playing in a punk band. This of course could have been disastrous but the Smoking Popes pull it off with ease, as the smooth croon of lead singer Josh Caterer has not changed one single bit and musically the band is tighter, more precise and completely focused. Maturity does this to you, along with bringing the experience and ability to incorporate sharp as needles hooks that helps make This Is Only A Test a solid power pop punk record that highlights everything that has always made the Smoking Popes infectious. The real question will be if the Smoking Popes can translate to a younger audience but the reality is, if given the chance, This Is Only A Test should easily resonate with that age bracket, as well as totally satisfying longtime fans.
Key Tracks: "Wish We Were", "Punk Band", "This Is Only A Test"
Bands With Similar Fire:
Smoking Popes: Stay Down [Fire Note Review 11/6/08]
Smoking Popes Website
Smoking Popes MySpace
Smoking Popes Facebook
Asian Man Records
-Reviewed by Christopher Anthony