Rooted in PMA: Pennywise draws on its positive mental attitude from its early days - Albuquerque Journal

Rooted in PMA: Pennywise draws on its positive mental attitude from its early days

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Punk rock band Pennywise is touring in support of its current album, “Yesterdays.”

It takes a lot of effort to keep a band together for more than 25 years. Jim Lindberg and Pennywise have done just that.

Starting back in the late ’80s in Hermosa Beach, Calif., the band didn’t really imagine releasing 11 albums or selling millions of records.

Lindberg, who left the band in 2010 but has since returned, says its new album, “Yesterdays,” is an homage to the band’s original bassist Jason Thirsk. Thirsk died in 1996 and wrote the bulk of the lyrics and music of the songs in the late ’80s.

“Jason was the emotional core of Pennywise and his songwriting was very much about PMA (positive mental attitude) and that’s really what initially drew me to the band and where we started out,” Lindberg says during a recent interview. “The punk scene had became really cynical and confused in the late ’80s and it seemed like the only bands that were doing anything inspiring were the ones singing about positivity and unity and heading in a new direction.”

Lindberg says “Yesterdays” is a “new album of old songs.” He says the original recordings of the 1988 session can be heard at the end of the album.

“We always wanted to go back and record these songs because later in our career we started to get more political and angry – that may have turned some people off but that’s what we were feeling at the time,” he says. “In the back of our minds we knew we had these cool, old songs that were more life-affirming, it just took us 25 years to get back to it.”

The album was recorded in the band’s hometown factory district, known for its influx of rehearsal studios and surfboard repair shops.

Lindberg says the band consciously gave the tracks a hometown feel to preserve their original spirit.

“We tracked the whole thing in a few days doing a couple of takes of each song so it’s a really raw album in that sense,” he says. “Instead of having the pressure to write a new album, it made more sense for us to play these songs and remember why we started Pennywise in the first place and I think that helped us out a lot.”

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