So, a while back a guy named Larry emailed me that he liked my site and digs the humor. With that Larry wrote:
"Hey Grouchy -
So, I'll take my chance, eh? Your site looked interesting - humor, the key. Like the whole grouch rating system. Plus anyone who loves Beggars Banquet as much as I do can't be all bad."
To be fair I should have listened to this album before listening to the new NOFX album. NOFX are killer players with spot on tight breaks and blazing fast licks who throw in a melodic horn section here and there on the new album. (Gabe O has dibs on reviewing their new album called Coaster - so I won't steal his thunder, but Coaster is a 4 or 5 scowl album based on my initial listening.)
Lets start with the cover art for She is like a British car. Larry thought I might dig it and I do - the whole e-insurance.com artwork made me laugh. Cover art is one thing I miss from the old days. Make no mistake I'd rather carry around all my MP3s on a little rectangle that is straight out of the Jetsons, than try to lug around more vinyl than one guy can carry. I do, however, miss looking at the old vinyl album covers.
I would really like to dig this album. It has some nice moments. Track 10 Back to the Concrete Pond has a B-52s vibe that is kind of cool.
These guys probably do really well playing Frat parties - they sound like a lot of fun. The music is the perfect backdrop to pick up on some little blond sorority babe who is like, uh, you know majoring in, like, anthropology. Evidently that is Larry's idea as well based on the lyrics of Track 11 Rock and Roll Rant. This is my Rock and Roll Rant, I can't seem to get into your pants. Shades of the Knack...I also noticed the word Wonderkind - used frequently in this song. I'm not sure if it is artistic license, but the word is pronounced kind like Kindergarten not like the English word kind. There is a really nice horn on this track and the next Overture to the Sun. Overture to the Sun, the last track is probably the best on the album.
Track 1 Junk reminds me of the Illogicalbeats' track We Be Drinking
Track 2: The title track has a cool bass line and that funky neo-60s groove to it.
Track 5: I'm On The Underground made me laugh. I grew my hair real long / I got my arms real strong / I wrote a simple song / I knew that I belong / I hit another bong / I wrote a better song /
Track 6: Man in The Way - has a cool intro - Surf groove with heavy drums - I dig it. There are some nice effects on his guitar in this song.
The main problem is that I keep waiting for the guitar to open up and it doesn't ever really deliver.
So what is the bottom line? Like I said above, great Frat party band. I imagine that there are scores of easily amused anthropology / American Studies majors who, would, like you know, flock to the party. I just don't feel the music that much - Larry take a listen to Social Distortion's Live at the Roxy. The kick ass two string licks found on most every track of that album would spice up this album. The humor is great and I dig tongue in cheek shtick too, but at the end of the day I need to hear guitar and a band that blows me away.
Grouch rating: 2 scowls out of 5