Photo: Alondra Buccio
This past year has brought with it its fair share of surprises, but one we certainly did not see coming was the rebirth of the scene kid. From Hot Topic worthy fits making their way to TikTok to KennyHoopla joining forces with none other than the legend himself Travis Barker to deliver one of our favorite new tracks of recent memory, it feels like 2005 all over again.
"ESTELLA//" marks the latest alternative anthem from the idiosyncratic mind of Wisconsin-bred genre shapeshifter KennyHoopla, following the release of his acclaimed debut EP, how will i rest in peace if i'm buried by a highway?// earlier this year. Opening on a barrage of electric guitars and Barker's trademark drums, the striking collaboration wastes absolutely no time at all. Its breakneck pace is more than warranted given its tight two-minute shy runtime.
In defiance of, or rather due to its mile-a-minute pacing and concise packaging, "ESTELLA//" manages to stand as a testament to the visceral euphoria of pop punk. Unrequited love takes on a life or death quality as KennyHoopla lets his still-beating heart bleed on the floor beneath him. The unabashed confessional nature of the lyrics combined with the Wisconsin native's impassioned delivery instantaneously takes you back to the days where heartbreak was best conveyed via AIM away messages and Tumblr posts.
And while there is an undeniable nostalgic quality to how perfectly "ESTELLA//" would fit on the mainstage of Warped Tour or illegally downloaded to your iPod nano, the two-minute shy bullet punch to the heart manages to transcend the trappings of a sentimental blast from the past. What KennyHoopla and Travis Barker have crafted here is a sonic passing of the baton, from one generation to the next.
Listen to "ESTELLA//" below: