On their second album, Greg Antista & The Lonely Streets make good on the promise of their 2019 debut, delivering nearly a dozen 2-to-3-minute pristine pop punk tracks that manage to eclipse the already impressive output from their first effort.
The band, which already featured former members of Joyride, Foxy, Manic Hispanic, Cadillac Tramps, and The Hangmen, added in veteran SoCal punk guitarist Frank Agnew (The Adolescents, T.S.O.L.) in the interim.
The album opens with “Down on Commonwealth” a song that manages to be both nostalgic about Antista’s own experiences growing up in Southern California and the timely, speaking to the need for police reforms (antagonistic LA cops were part of the hallmark of the 80’s punk scene… and sadly not much has changed). “The song is a reminiscence about growing up in the Fullerton punk scene,” said Antista. “The intersection of Harbor Boulevard and Commonwealth Avenue is the epicenter of all that… But the area has a dark side as well. The homeless situation is out of control. And local residents are still shaken by Kelly Thomas’ beating death by the police. Myself, and other members of the Lonely Streets have taken part in local protests related to his killing.”
Like 2019’s Shake, Stomp and Stumble, Under The Neon Heat still retains a bit of the Americana/country influences, especially on songs like the acoustic “Unfinished business” and goofy, but nonetheless stellar closing track, “Carmelita (Warren Does Warren),” a complete overhaul of the Warren Zevon song complete with accordion. The album is a solid step forward for these punk rock vets.