Posts tagged ‘less than jake’

March 9, 2014

Album 0440: Less Than Jake – Pezcore

Less_Than_Jake-Pezcore-Frontal

Release Date: 1995
Genre: Ska/Punk

Tracklisting:

1. Liquor Store (02:44)
2. My Very Own Flag (02:47)
3. Johnny Quest Thinks We’re Sellouts (02:57)
4. Big (03:06)
5. Shotgun (02:57)
6. Black Coffee (02:26)
7. Throw The Brick (02:11)
8. Growing Up On A Couch (02:32)
9. Blindsided (02:54)
10. Downbeat (02:12)
11. Jen Doesn’t Like Me Anymore (02:57)
12. Out Of The Crowd (02:32)
13. Robo (01:36)
14. Where In The Hell Is Mike Sinkovich? (02:13)
15. Process (02:42)
16. Three Quarts Drunk (02:08)
17. Boomtown (02:45)
18. Short On Ideas (01:48)
19. One Last Cigarette/Laverne & Shirley (04:37)

Total Length: 50:02

Liquor Store is one of the band’s most classic songs, and a fantastic start to the album. It’s super catchy and gets stuck in your head. My Very Own Flag is also a great little piece, with an emotional element attached and even an ‘arena rock’ segment. Johnny Quest Thinks We’re Sellouts is one of the highlights of the album as well, it’s incredibly memorable and has a ridiculously good intro. I love this song.

Big is decent, but noticeably less interesting and even the band themselves don’t seem as invested. It is one of their earliest songs though, so I can forgive some issues with it in that sense. Shotgun doesn’t really stand out too much, except for the bridge which is this deal with the horns that they never really revisited, ever. It reminds me of early RxB oddly. Black Coffee doesn’t have any real redeeming qualities though.

Throw The Brick was apparently written in the studio, which is amazing since the whole album was recorded in 19 hours. It’s a fun, simple song that I’ve always been fond of. Growing Up On A Couch is a neat song, but the second track does almost everything it does even better. Blindsided is fairly fun, it’s oddly a bit too long which usually isn’t an issue on this album. Downbeat is almost good, but the rhythms are kind of ‘off’ for me.

Jen Doesn’t Like Me Anymore is another really classic track from the band, it gets stuck in your head easily, and it and track three were redone on the band’s next album. Out Of The Crowd has some fun moments in it. Robo isn’t very good, sadly, because it’s at least got a cool title. Where In The Hell Is Mike Sinkovich? is great, I’ve always liked this one. Process is decent, it doesn’t really stand out.

Three Quarts Drunk bores be until the last 20 seconds or so when things pick up and then the song’s over. Boomtown is great, another simple song I love. Short On Ideas isn’t my favorite, but I like that it doesn’t really end, it just leads directly into One Last Cigarette, which is a pretty good ending track. There’s a hidden track of the band playing the theme from Laverne & Shirley which is kind of funny. This is a solid starting album for the band, even if there are a few duds.

Final Rating: 7.5/10

August 17, 2013

Album 0325: Less Than Jake – Live From Japan

No Album Cover Available

Release Date: 2002
Genre: Ska/Punk

Tracklisting:

1. Interview (Part 1) (06:39)
2. Look What Happened (03:21)
3. Interview (Part 2) (04:53)
4. Suburban Myth (04:21)

Total Length: 19:14

This is an odd little release that the band sold at their shows. A couple interviews from when they were in Japan, as well as some live tracks performed there. Interview (Part 1) has Vinnie once again explaining the band’s name and other general things about the band. Look What Happened is actually played in the radio studio. It’s kind of stripped down, they aren’t using their full kit and it’s essentially an acoustic version. It’s kind of neat just for that.

Interview (Part 2) is more generic questions, talking about their upcoming tour and has a couple funny moments. Suburban Myth is from one of their actual shows there, and the focus seems almost to be more on the banter than the song. The actual song is fun though. Less Than Jake has a lot of little releases like this that are fun to listen to once or twice, and that’s about it.

Final Rating: 6.5/10

February 3, 2013

Album 0236: Less Than Jake – B Is For B-Sides

LessThanJake-BisforBsides

Release Date: 2004
Genre: Ska/Punk

Tracklisting:

1. Portrait Of A Cigarette Smoker At 19 (03:16)
2. Sleep It Off (02:25)
3. Last Rites To Sleepless Nights (02:19)
4. Bridge And Tunnel Authority (03:29)
5. Goodbye In Gasoline (02:33)
6. A.S.A.O.K. (02:08)
7. Jay Frenzal (01:16)
8. Showbiz? Science? Who Cares? (02:21)
9. Sobriety Is A Serious Business And Business Isn’t So Good (00:47)
10. Nine-One-One To Anyone (02:22)
11. Robots One, Humans Zero (02:43)
12. National Anthem (02:13)

Total Length: 27:52

Portrait Of A Cigarette Smoker At 19 starts off the album fairly well. The chorus is catchy at least. Sleep It Off also sticks in your head, and is just a standard LTJ song. Last Rites To Sleepless Nights has a really neat intro but otherwise is of the same quality as the first two tracks. Bridge And Tunnel Authority kind of treads the same ground as another track on here, it’s a fairly good track though. Goodbye In Gasoline is a great punk song though, plenty of cool stuff in it.

A.S.A.O.K. has some really fantastic vocal lines, it makes sense that even though this song got left off the main album that they would still play it live. Jay Frenzal is a fun little punk song, I don’t know how accurate the song is. Showbiz? Science? Who Cares? also has some cool vocal stuff. It’s the stuff that really sticks with me with this band. Sobriety Is A Serious Business And Business Isn’t So Good is a fantastic little song. I love the lyrics and there are horns and then it’s over and yay.

Nine-One-One To Anyone is just a solid song. I can’t say anything too bad about it. Robots One, Humans Zero is a fairly good song with not-so-great lyrics. National Anthem is a highlight of the album for me. I love it dearly, though Roger from the band doesn’t like it at all. I can maybe see why, but oh well. This is a fun little album, and there a couple songs on here that should have been on Anthem instead of what made it on there, but I am kind of torn on whether some bands should only make the best albums they could, or release everything they can.

Final Rating: 7.5/10

September 30, 2012

Album 0131: Less Than Jake – Greased

Release Date: 1996
Genre: Ska/Punk

Tracklisting:

1. Summer Nights (01:54)
2. You’re The One I Want (02:11)
3. Look At Me, I’m Sandra Dee (01:02)
4. Greased Lightnin’ (02:28)
5. Hopelessly Devoted To You (02:13)
6. Blue Moon (01:38)
7. Beauty School Dropout (02:17)
8. We Go Together (01:46)

Total Length: 15:29

Summer Nights is a ton of fun, and really this whole EP is. It’s such an odd idea, performing the songs from this musical in a ska/punk fashion. You’re The One I Want works extremely well, especially since (as evident by the cover) the band really plays up having both Chris and Roger singing all over the place. Look At Me, I’m Sandra Dee is short and at least is over with quickly.

Greased Lightnin’ is very cool. Hopelessly Devoted To You doesn’t quite work as well as some of the other tracks. Blue Moon is neat though. Beauty School Dropout is pretty good in the second half with the slower part. We Go Together is great, I love hearing them do the little vocal phrases. This short collection isn’t something I’ll listen to often, it’s more of a novelty, but there are a couple strong tracks.

Final Rating: 6.5/10

March 20, 2012

Album 0022: Less Than Jake – Greetings From Less Than Jake

Release Date: 2011
Genre: Ska/Punk

Tracklisting:

1. Can’t Yell Any Louder (01:41)
2. Goodbye Mr. Personality (03:30)
3. Harvey Wallbanger (03:06)
4. Oldest Trick In The Book (03:10)
5. Life Led Out Loud (02:40)

Total Length: 14:06

Can’t Yell Any Louder has a great intro horn riff, and the song itself is just fun to sing along to. Just a perfect offering of what I’ve always loved about this band. Goodbye Mr. Personality has one of the most infectious bass lines, and the chorus is honestly one of the best things the band has ever written. How good this track is still astounds me. Harvey Wallbanger is a really cool track, I especially love the bridge. It’s weird when I like the bridge more than the rest of the song, because then I wonder why the entire song wasn’t the bridge.

Oldest Trick In The Book has a very neat, catchy rhythm, it’s just a fantastic song. They haven’t done something quite like it before. Life Led Out Loud is more of a punk song, but this is another song showing what I love about the band. Having essentially two lead singers works really well in this song, the tradeoff really helps. This EP is of course short and very sweet. Those seem to be the perfect length sometimes. They can have much more focused ideas and leave you wanting more.

Final Rating: 10/10

March 5, 2012

Album 0021: Less Than Jake – TV/EP

Release Date: 2010
Genre: Ska/Punk

1. Channel 1 (“Leave It All to Me”, the theme song to iCarly) (01:12)
2. Channel 2 (Hungry Hungry Hippos jingle) (00:30)
3. Channel 3 (Theme song to Animaniacs) (01:05)
4. Channel 4 (McDonalds’ jingle for the Big Mac) (00:23)
5. Channel 5 (Theme song to Diff’rent Strokes) (00:54)
6. Channel 6 (“Boss of Me”, the theme song to Malcolm in the Middle) (00:40)
7. Channel 7 (General Mills’ Pac-Man breakfast cereal jingle) (00:33)
8. Channel 8 (Theme song to Scooby-Doo, Where Are You!) (00:55)
9. Channel 9 (Kit Kat jingle) (00:11)
10. Channel 10 (Theme song to SpongeBob SquarePants) (00:43)
11. Channel 11 (“In The Street”, the theme song to That ’70s Show) (00:53)
12. Channel 12 (Oscar Mayer Weiners jingle) (00:30)
13. Channel 13 (“Love and Marriage”, the theme of Married… with Children) (00:46)
14. Channel 14 (Toys “R” Us jingle) (00:28)
15. Channel 15 (“Making Our Dreams Come True”, the theme from Laverne & Shirley) (01:15)
16. Channel 16 (FreeCreditScore.com Pirate-themed restaurant jingle) (00:33)

Total Length: 11:29

Channel 1 is okay, I guess they needed something newer but it’s not too great of a song. Channel 2 is a fun little jaunt. Channel 3 is brilliant. It’s a great song in its own right, and is an awesome rendition. Channel 4 is eh, this version isn’t too interesting. Channel 5 is pretty fun, I like this rendition. Channel 6 is fun but I actually prefer the original version. Channel 7 is one of the few things on here I was unfamiliar with, but it’s kind of cool.

Channel 8 is an awesome rendition of an already great song. Channel 9 is short and sweet. Channel 10 is pretty fun, and I like the use of the flute. Channel 11 has a very cool version of a song that has already been done twice on the original show. Channel 12 is just funny, and has a sample from Seinfeld. Channel 13 is pretty neat, it’s an interesting change for the song. Channel 14 is a fun throwback. Channel 15 is the only one of these the band has done before, so this is just a better recording of it essentially. Channel 16 is probably the oddest choice on here but it works perfectly.

Despite my misgivings about a few tracks, this is such a short and fun little work that I just love listening through it and having 12 minutes just fly by.

Final Rating: 10/10