New Wave is most successful when Against Me! doesn't stray too far from its folk-inflected punk roots, as displayed on the title track or instantly infectious single "White People for Peace." Although the group is constantly compared to the Clash, it doesn't quite have the same ability to recontextualize its decidedly un-punk influences into something fresh and new, a fact best (or worst) demonstrated in the Franz Ferdinand-sounding "Stop!" For every misstep, though, there's a successful mini-experiment like "Thrash Unreal," which shows the band is as capable at writing a perfect pop song as it is at catalyzing circle pits.
"Are you restless like me?" frontman Tom Gabel asks over the cathartic chorus to "Up the Cuts." If the answer is yes, New Wave is a good place to start.