Joel Regal
The Peter Pan Syndrome

The Peter Pan Syndrome
I’ve been up
Adios Amigos

Joel Regal - music



Mixed and mastered by Arni Eythorsson
Artwork by Michael Löfgren

Released 2011
Reviewed 6/8-2011


Let me tell you a little story: Once upon a time in a small nation in the north where polar bears and penguins populate the streets of the nation’s capital there was a punk band that I liked. This band was called Nemas and if I recall correctly they were from Gothenburg in the southern parts of Switzerland, sorry Sweden and they do not have neither penguins nor polar bears on their streets it is in the capital city Bern, sorry Stockholm it is like that. Anyway, band was disbanded in 2010 when singer Joel Lager and guitarist Nisse something departed the band, in its ashes two different outfits were born, one is the punk band called Tear Them Down and the other one is the ego project of Joel Lager where he has cleverly changed his last name to Regal which is kind of a funny thing for an artist name, wouldn’t work that well for me though, Mlamlläk is not a cool last name.

Anyway, this ego project is not as you might believe to begin with by looking at the strange cover a new punk rock thing, instead Joel has threaded down the acoustic part where he handles the instruments and the vocals, he have had some help on the mixing and the not so interesting looking cover art as well. His debut release is an EP that is called The Peter Pan Syndrome and it has three tracks which in the best punk rock spirit takes you a total of eight minutes to play. This EP was recorded in Joel’s Living room, a room that seems well suited for recording music as it sounds good enough for the music in questions and nothing to complain about when it comes to production or sound. The songs also has a living spirit to them, they give a sense of being played live which in term makes them feel a bit alive so to speak.

Anyway, I do believe I blew the whole thing with story telling but fear not as that thought actually came from the lyrical content of this release. Joel tells here the story of his experiences with punk band Nemas and also some other smaller life experiences are told in the lyrics. As the lyrics take such big role here I think they are slightly disturbing as I think telling a story of a band that only made one album which I liked feels a bit like making a best of album after two releases, a classical case of who cares? Fortunately it is not only that, the first song which is the title track tells a story of someone who never wants to grow up, a story I can identify with as growing up feels like a stupid prospect, getting family, children, station wagon and all of those things, a prospect I, like Joel have decided is not really for me. The second track is the one that is the best, it has a catchy melody and good energy that makes it stick on my mind for some time after I have played it. The final track Adios Amigos is a look back but also a message with a good luck wish for his old bandmates’ new band which he mentions by name in the song a couple of times.

Overall I think this EP is alright, the songs are quite good and he would work really well going around to small restaurants and clubs to play his songs to brighten up parties. As an EP though I do think eight minutes is on the short side and it is like we are robbed of something, or not getting what we should get as the record ends almost before it starts which is something I never like, in a way it feels like a waste of time to play this EP while going through all the reviews as it gets silent in the headphones just when it has started. But the songs are good with their punk roots very clearly audible and the voice is also a bit like a punk voice and it works rather well for this songs. In the end though even if I find it being quite good it always feels too short to really enjoy. Maybe if he decides to make an album sometime in the future it will be really good. I don’t think potential buyers will be disappointed but nor will they be overwhelmed which makes this a rather Swedish album, good enough to enjoy while listening.


Label: Penguins Vs Sharks/Ditto Music
Three similar bands: Nemas/Tear Them Down/
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
läs på svenska