It is October, and that means that Buffalo, New York will soon reclaim its frozen throne as a place where the ability to both thrive under unrelenting desolation and dizzy bat your own face into a pickup truck is worn as a badge of honor. But Buffalo should be celebrated for another reason: it is the geographical embodiment of human tenacity. Buffalo represents resilience, its ability to find the little things to make life bearable—even when you reside in a place known as much for its status as a certified winter hellscape as its warm embrace of soul-crushing disappointment.
Of course, throwing your friends through tables while you’re tailgating a Bills game can only provide so much entertainment, and Buffalo has pulled an excellent music scene out of its icy butthole in the past couple of decades. The emo/pop punk band Pentimento is one of the more recent notable acts to come out of the city, and boy, do they know disappointment. After getting off to a hot start with an EP, a split, and some heavy touring in 2011, the band was forced to pull the plug on the release of their debut full-length after their old label threatened to sue them. They put it up on Bandcamp, and as those from Buffalo are wont to do, they kept going, putting out music and touring despite the very dramatic and obvious blow of not being able to sell their first record on a physical format.
Now, the band is back with their second full-length, and this time, there are no issues: I, No Longer is set to be released on Philadelphia’s Bad Timing Records this month. The record sees the band combining the best of early 2000s emo (Taking Back Sunday and Spitalfield come to mind) with the anthemic hooks of western New York contemporaries like Polar Bear Club and Such Gold. The result is 12 introspective, well-produced pop punk songs that reassert the band three years after the disaster surrounding its first record. On I, No Longer, Pentimento—like the city they hail from—prove their resilience.