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Levi Zadoff and Dead Hendrix Drop “Dead Summer”

California and Canada come together, kind of, for the latest release from Pop-Punkers, Levi Zadoff and Dead Hendrix. Dead Summer is an ode or, perhaps more accurately, a lament to the lost Summer of 2020. Written during the height of the pandemic, the album is a collection of stories, impressions, and evaluations. For the most part, it’s typical fare for the genre in question, but Zadoff and Hendrix provide some truly impassioned and cathartic moments. Dead Summer is an EP consisting of 4 songs and a bonus track.

The opening track, “Don’t Think It Could Get Much Better,” is somewhat atypical, albeit with more of an electronically flavored backdrop. Some may hear modern MGK on this one, which is a fair comparison. The title denotes that which is both literal and sarcastic, setting the tone for the theme of the record. “Alone” is rather poignant sounding for a piece that is essentially an exercise in self-pity. This one is definitely intended for a younger audience, and Zadoff and Hendrix seem to know exactly who their audience is and will be.


“Can’t Be God” is a bit well-cooked for the Pop-Punk genre. It’s a highly modern piece that does some genre-blending and arrives at some decent vocal hooks. It’s also a striking enough and potentially controversial title. “Love Game” immediately brings things back to basics. The guitars and drums get ramped up on this somewhat saucy track, where Zadoff and Hendrix don’t hold their tongue, even a bit. This one is sure to be a crowd-pleaser, as it offers everything that fans of this style expect and then some.

The aforementioned bonus track might just be the one that steals the entire album. At first glance, I just assumed that “Teenage Dirtbag” was a cover of the late 90’s Wheatus hit. What I got after listening was arguably something more substantial. Hendrix and Zadoff take us on a delightful ride of fist-pumping concert rock with their version of “Teenage Dirtbag.” The Travis Barker blast beats serve the piece well, as both artists pour out every remaining emotion for this album closer.

Dead Summer is solid in terms of content. Concept albums aren’t standard for Pop-Punk, but Zadoff and Hendrix have seemingly pulled it off with this effort. Hendrix has been quoted as saying that this is the album he has been waiting to make his entire life. Upon listening to Dead Summer, you actually get the feeling that these two are capable of achieving much more.

Mindy McCall



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