One of my favorite new discoveries of 2023 is the Denver based band Public Opinion. I found them earlier this year when they released two brand new singles “Heaven Sent” and “Dry Clean Only” via Convulse Records. They followed these tracks a few months later with a song called “Bug,” that features Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania based band Rex Tycoon.
“We’re either the surprisingly poppy band on the hardcore show or the surprisingly aggressive band on the indie rock show,” laughs Public Opinion frontman and founder, Kevin Hart.
“Heaven Sent” and “Dry Clean Only” are two very catchy tracks which follow their 2022 Modern Convenience EP and marks Public Opinion’s first time working with engineer and producer Taylor Young. The band effortlessly combine primal first wave punk with a sense of unabashed catchiness, managing to keep a foot in guitar pop band and ferocious hardcore without missing a beat. Both “Heaven Sent” and “Dry Clean Only” are great tracks but out of the two, I find myself going back to “Heaven Sent” more.
If I found out about the Modern ConvenienceEP around the time of its release, it 100% would have made my top five EPs of 2022 list. It is a wonderful five track release. One of my favorite tracks on the EP is “Sweet All The Time,” which is Public Opinion at their most overtly poppy, with an anthemic chorus that’s sure to be stuck in listeners’ heads long after it’s over. In the song, Hart focuses on a romantic relationship–a tangible real-life connection that overshadows all internal doubts or ephemeral irritations.
Just before “Sweet All The Time,” there is a track called “Fixated,” which includes some vocals from Militarie Gun’s singer Ian, also a long time friend of Kevin. On “American Bandstand,” Hart spits out a tongue-in-cheek lament of music scene pretensions with a snark to spare. “It’s not really about feeling raw towards anyone,” he laughs, “it’s really just a reminder that sometimes this is all pretty ridiculous.” Overall, this EP is fun, deserves a listen, and serves as a winking reminder that when it comes to rock & roll, maybe it’s fun to stir up a little trouble after all.
Fans of bands like “newer” bands Militarie Gun, Angel Du$t, Dazy, Drug Church, Squint, Fiddlehead, Anxious, and more will instantly love the music from Public Opinion.
If you’re looking for a new band to listen to, whether you are going to Flyover Festival or not, make that new band Public Opinion. They’ve had an exciting 2023 from new music releases, plenty (and plenty) of shows, and 2024 will be just as exciting for the band, if not more exciting.
And if you are heading to Flyover next month, make sure you catch Public Opinion. Continue reading below to learn a little more about their recent releases, what might be coming soon, and more, vocalist Kevin took the time to answer some questions!
Hey! Thanks so much for taking the time to answer some questions! Introduce Public Opinion to our readers! If you had to describe the band in three words, what would those words be?
Oh man. I’m going to go with “Catchy Rock Music.”
Earlier this year you released “Heaven Sent” and “Dry Clean Only” and have recently teased the release of more songs this month (August). These two February tracks have been on repeat for me, actually. I think “Heaven Sent” is my favorite of the two. Can you talk about the meaning and inspiration behind this track?
I’m glad you enjoyed those! “Heaven Sent” was influenced somewhere between the 70’s punk and 00’s garage rock revival stuff that had such an influence on our previous record, while also taking a lot of pulls from the 90’s English stuff. Truthfully, one of those riffs is nearly identical to a part from Modern Life Is Rubbish. Lyrically, just another song about me finding parts that I don’t like in the hobbies that fill my time. Hater shit.
As I’m writing these questions, some upcoming music has not been officially announced and/or released. So, can you talk about this new music? Whether that is the meaning behind the lyrics, new things you experimented with, etc., give us an inside look of what it is all about!
We put out a collaborative track “Bug” with our friends in Rex Tycoon from Pittsburgh, PA on August 29. I’ve been talking to Austin from that band for a while and we played a couple shows together on tour this past April. When I wrote the song I knew I wanted Austin to sing on it, but it turned out so far afield from what either band does that we thought it would be cool to just all record it together and co-release it.
Does this new release connect to your February tracks somehow? If so, can you explain how? When writing these new songs, like “Dry Clean Only,” what new techniques and styles did you experiment with (in comparison to your other music)? Was there anything you were like “we have to try this”?
The Rex single stands fully on its own from the two songs we did in February. We recorded it in an afternoon with Keith from Rex in their practice space during our most recent tour with Lurk. Just showed up, plugged into all of their gear, tossed up some mics and tracked it in an hour or so. I can say, though, we do have another record or two finished that falls in line exactly with February songs. Like “Heaven Sent”, that’s also produced by Ian Shelton and recorded by Taylor Young again at The Pit in Van Nuys, California.
Along with your recent and upcoming music, I think it’s important to talk about your location and record label you are working with! You are a Denver based band and on the Denver based Convulse Records roster (much deserved, though, of course). What does it mean to you to be part of this label?
Convulse is great. Adam and the team have always been cool to work with and be around, and they do a ton of Colorado music in general, whether that be booking shows literally all the time or putting on for younger bands. They also put out a lot of cool stuff that I like a lot, and some of it is becoming very, very popular. Couldn’t be happier to see them and our friends’ bands win.
Talk to us a little about the Denver scene. Who are some bands in the area that we should be adding to our playlists?
Destiny Bond, Candy Apple, and Broken Record. There are dozens more, but these are a solid start.
What goals are you setting for the rest of 2023 (and maybe even 2024) either personally or as a band? Will we see more shows, music (ex. more singles, an album or EP)?
After the single comes out, we’re playing in Colorado Springs with Restraining Order and Gumm. We’re also doing a small run of shows around Flyover Fest with some friends – that should be announced soon. Beyond that, hopefully preorders for a new record go up in January. If the past 12 months was any indication, I’m sure we will be playing every corner of the country again once it’s out.
What have been some of your favorite releases of 2023 (any genre welcome)!
Self Defense Family – Law Of Karma Live: Fake Shit Wins But Not Tonight
Restraining Order – Locked In Time
Militarie Gun – Life Under The Gun
MSPAINT – Post-American
Dazy – OTHERBODY
Rex Tycoon – What’s Good?
Velocity – Demo 2023
Angel Du$t – Space Jam
Spiritual Cramp – Nah, That Ain’t It / Phone Lines Down
We are super excited to see you perform this November in Tulsa at Flyover Fest! How does it feel to be included on such an amazing lineup?
We’re pretty psyched to be playing the fest. Unsure if we’ll go over well or if we will be “food band”, but either way it’ll be awesome. I also think every person I’ve met from the midwest in the last year has posted about how excited they are for the fest, so seeing everyone in one place will be awesome.
What are you excited to explore outside of the fest (any specific restaurants, shops, etc.)?
I’m certain KJ and Devan will find a vegan spot they’ll want us all to go to every single day, so I’m going to say that haha, Otherwise, just finding good coffee.
What bands on the 2023 lineup are you excited about?
Excited to see Restraining Order, Bib, Spine, God’s Hate, and of course Twitching Tongues.
If you had to share one last thing with us, what would that be?
Appreciate y’all reaching out. Excited for the fest! Check out everything at Convulse and RTR.
Watch a video of Public Opinion performing live in Denver from November 2022.