The spawn of punk and goth reaches maturity.
Aging gracefully is tough for pop punks and goths alike: The makeup starts to look silly, for one thing. But Alkaline Trio singer Matt Skiba proves it's possible with Heavens, which imagines the Cure born to the Warped generation. Despite the occasionally cringe-worthy lyrics (arterial spray, guillotines, hearses), the songs are surprisingly tuneful and thoughtful. The title track's bouncing bass, deadpan vocal melodies, and almost quaintly dated '80s keyboards reveal a grown-up kid not quite ready to give up his childhood bloodlust. JOSH MODELL