With three records on their catalog, British rockers Playmaker released their fourth album “How To Be Good (and related stories)” with songs recorded on breaks during the pandemic’s lockdown making it Playmaker’s take on how the world turned upside down.

Playmaker’s rocking roots are loud and clear right at their record opener “Babydriver”, an old school rocking riff and guitar tone leading the way with powerful fluid vocals, catchy chorus and guitar licks here and there like the good old days. They keep on pushing with the same energy but, with a slightly different pace on the sing-along “You Want Me Now”, keeping their raw rocking style with more groove, more engagement making this a perfect fit for their live setlist. The record’s dynamics keep on rising and getting more engaging with the playful energetic “I Want To Fill You With My Love” before they steer into a more mellow pace in the title track “How to be Good”, a melodic ballad right in the middle of the record to slow things down a bit, and focus more on creating music progressions and adding different layers and dynamics within a poetic mood. “Whisper it, What Have You Done” and “I Will Make You Happy” picked the groove up again with some groovy energetic riffs and engaging vocal melodies plus, some of the record’s best guitar works. Starting “The Men Who Stole The Moon” the record shifts into a more modern sound, it kicks with a big catchy intro and killer unmistakable melody, it’s more progressive than most of the record but keeps their catchy playful energy. It has a hooking structure and a smooth flow that can make it go big, I imagine this is going to be one of their hits especially, with that memorable chorus and killer guitar solo. “Clear Day” comes with a bright hopeful sound and feel-good mood. It has beautiful melodies and a balanced structure with no overdoing. Ending the record on a high dynamic note with “(It’s Not A) Love Song” and “This is How it Ends” with both having some alternative elements and some of the record’s best guitar melodies and drumlines. 

“How To Be Good (and related stories)” shows Playmaker’s diverse influences and their musicianship and songwriting abilities in managing all these influences and fusing them into something their own. They have big and bright sound especially on their “modern sounding” tracks which were my favorites. Looking forward to more from Playmaker and I suggest you go check them out right now! Cheers!

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