Acoustic strums, beautiful vocal harmonies, pianos, keyboards, and swelling ambient noise- not the kind of music one might assume would come from a band made up of veteran punk musicians, on a veteran punk record label. This is just the next step in the journey of Northern Virginia’s Pygmy Lush, one that has been marked by redefi nition and rebirth. The sound of this record is one that’s come only with age and experience, after thousands of miles have been logged in cramped touring vans. They’re following a path that many punks seem to follow as the years go on; The need for quiet, the need for space, for refl ection and introspection, but the same amount of need for honesty, passion and expression. These feelings get put into something tangible in an old farmhouse near a far out Washington D.C. suburb, where Pygmy Lush live, write and practice, tucked away .They’ve tried to carve out a niche of solace in the middle of endless sameness, a place where they can stand. A lot of the songs are about friendships and connection, unsurprisingly. The things that bind us together through the years, and the things that split us apart. On the title track, vocalist Chris Taylor makes a declaration to his community. “I’ll make a promise to all my friends/I’ll never leave this world without you...the end isn’t distance/it’s just a place to stay.” What is life when you’ve found your world, your purpose for it all? What is left? Anyone with two eyes and a brain might love reading through the lyric sheet for Taylor’s humorous and heartbreaking honesty. A couple of new members help to seal the deal on Old Friends. Aimee Argote of Des Ark; friend, tourmate, labelmate, and now honorary member, contributes vocals to over half the tracks, and some piano as well. You might have seen new drummer Eric Kane over the years, serving up a fast paced soundtrack to stagediving and high fiving for Richmond punk act Strike Anywhere.