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‘The Story So Far’ previews new album at Amoeba Music

The first line of The Story So Far’s “Proper Dose” set the tone for their brief appearance at Berkeley’s Amoeba Music, bouncing to angsty punk one moment, then swaying back and forth to a sadder and slow song:

“Highs and lows are how I flow.”

Pop-punk band The Story So Far jumped on stage Wednesday in front of rows of people behind shelves holding records and CDs.

On the right wall, David Bowie, The Clash, Joy Division and Iron Maiden posters filled the view, stating that this is a place for music; a place to let guitars and drums take you away to forgotten memories and sublime wonders.

Vocalist and front man Parker Cannon said:

“It’s good to be back. I bought so many albums in this store during the hyphy days.”

The Walnut Creek alumni played a quick show, running just under an hour. But this free show consisted of new songs from their new album, Proper Dose, as well as classics from their first three records.

The first handful of songs were from their new album, one that may not win a crazy number of new followers, but that will sure keep the original fans’ heads banging.

Amoeba is a record store. That being said, they have a small stage that resonates with intimate shows. The Story So Far is one of those rare bands that can command a stage, whether small or large.

“Out Of It,” released last September, is still a mosh pit dream driven by the essence of The Story So Far staples like “Nerve” and “Quicksand.” It plays to a fast, intense but catchy as hell beat. “Out Of It” is on my top five songs from the East Bay band.

Proper Dose includes a mix and range of the feels, from “Need To Know”’s punk flavor to the more easy-paced “Take Me As You Please.”

After performing five or so songs on their new album, The Story So Far played their massive hits like “Heavy Gloom,” “Quicksand,” “Empty Space,” and the much beloved “Clairvoyant.”

Cannon said:

“This is our last song.”

The audience sang along, nodding their heads and subtly swinging to their last song, “Clairvoyant.” Everyone seemed to know the lyrics to the song as the floating heads all around the room, facing the stage, belted out the chorus:

“The way that you left me is alright, its alright

If I argue the point than we yell and we fight

And I won’t be home for the rest of the night

You might hate my words but you know that I’m right

You know that I’m right.”

The Story So Far has the unlikely ability to make these words ring loud in a small record shop as well as on a Warped Tour stage. Both acoustic songs and heavy electric and guitar riffs on other songs help their seemingly similar sound feel diverse and new.

Cheers and ovations coming from the crowd let the pop-punk musicians know that they are always welcomed back to their home.

Although Proper Dose isn’t the band’s greatest record of all time, it for sure will make their already devoted fans happy as can be, especially those who got a glimpse of them live at Berkeley’s Amoeba Music.

The Story So Far’s fourth studio album, Proper Dose, drops this Friday.

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