James Plane Wreck

James Plane Wreck dropped How It Ends on May 31.

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Boise’s music scene has changed immensely in the past 20 years, and nobody knows that quite like punk rock band James Plane Wreck. After a short hiatus, the group is back, unwilling to let the current state of affairs stifle the excitement that comes with the release of its newest full-length album.

“Making this album has been so much fun, especially with these guys,” said guitarist and vocalist Aaron Smith. “We have a kind of collectiveness, and playing together is always great.”

The band has been making music in Idaho for years, long before its lineup took its current form. Andrew Bagley, Shane Brown, Shaun Shireman and Aaron Smith are the current line-up for James Plane Wreck. The band, in all its different iterations, has been playing Idaho stages since the early 2000s, and on May 31, the group released a full album that inadvertently captures the sentiment and tribulations of 2020. It’s entitled How It Ends.

Although the collection of 10 new songs has taken some time to finally finish, with the band working on them off and on since 2014, the result is a labor of love. How It Ends marks the return of James Plane Wreck, and it is reminiscent of all the darkness and light that life brings. The tracks are what the band does best: intense, grungy rock music juxtaposed with raw and emotive lyrics. The album carries a loose storyline, which main lyricist Smith said is up for each listener’s personal interpretation.

“I would say it [the album] evokes emotion, and that is indicative of the lyrics that Aaron writes,” Shireman said. “We are all able to feel the sense of emotion that he was going through at the time that he wrote them, and that definitely translates.”

Dropping new music in the midst of a global pandemic and in a climate of social unrest is admittedly not great timing, Smith said. Despite not being able to play live gigs and jam on stage, the band has chosen to do something positive and socially aware with the profits of the album. All proceeds that are made from Bandcamp will be donated to the Minnesota Freedom Fund.

“We thought that it was the least we could do,” Bagley said. “It has received so much support, more than anything we thought we would get, which has been great to see.”

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