The Slow Death - Born Ugly Got Worse (Cover Artwork)

The Slow Death

The Slow Death: Born Ugly Got WorseBorn Ugly Got Worse (2011)
Kiss of Death

Reviewer Rating: 3.5
User Rating:

Contributed by: JeloneJelone
(others by this writer | submit your own)

It would appear that punk rock supergroup the Slow Death has added a few more punk rock all-stars to the mix. Turns out supergroups could always be more super, and the addition of the likes of Zack Gontard (Dear Landlord) and Annie Sparrows (Soviettes) certainly helps on the group's debut full-lengt.
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It would appear that punk rock supergroup the Slow Death has added a few more punk rock all-stars to the mix. Turns out supergroups could always be more super, and the addition of the likes of Zack Gontard (Dear Landlord) and Annie Sparrows (Soviettes) certainly helps on the group's debut full-length. Speaking of which, if you wanted to anything about the band, the title Born Ugly Got Worse sure does sum it up.

What listeners get here is essentially a 30-minute continuation of the tunes found on the band's excellent seven-inches. Ever so slightly country-tinged bar punk tunes coated with lyrics that alternate between self-loathing and self-deprecating come one after another. While the whole drunk punk style has been done before, the Slow Death still does it better most. Born Ugly rocks the "fun songs/sad stories" dichotomy pretty well.

The record rarely lets up on energy. "Ticks of the Clock" oddly opens with guest vocalist Sparrows before "Pretty Boy" Jesse Thorson takes over the mic; either way, this a tear-in-your-beer-type song about missing someone badly. "Clock" sets the album up for a series of rocking, depressing tunes. "Side One Side A" (not to be confused with "First Song Side One," by drummer Mike Yannich's other band, the Ergs!) keeps the tempo up and the outlook grim. "Phantom Limbs" is yet another country-punk bummer.

Born Ugly's strength and weakness both lay in its consistency. Depending on one's perspective, it's either really coherent or really repetitive. I favor the former. The record doesn't deviate too much from the formula established by "Clock," but when it does, even if it's just a tempo change on "Opposite of Jesse's Girl," which slows down enough to add a guitar solo, it stands out.

The Slow Death is good at writing a particular kind of song. That song is rollicking and shouted out. It has a good beat. It's also inevitably about breaking up, getting drunkā?¦ or getting drunk because of a break-up. Born Ugly isn't quite a mindblower, but it's a solid record from some veterans that deserves multiple spins.


People who liked this also liked:
Banner Pilot - Heart Beats PacificDead To Me - Moscow Penny AnteBomb the Music Industry! - VacationRed City Radio - The Dangers of Standing StillThe Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!Against Me! - is Reinventing Axl RoseDear Landlord - Dream HomesAgainst Me! - As The Eternal CowboyThe Gaslight Anthem - American SlangSamiam - Trips

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
thingfromuranus (December 20, 2011)

I love this shit

killabeez666 (December 14, 2011)

It's nothing special, but I still catch myself listening to this album all the time. I'm content.

theproblemwithfire (December 3, 2011)

oh, big surprise. typical, tired orgcore tripe. doesn't any one ever get bored with this shit?

jizzo (November 17, 2011)

The only supergroup i would ever reckognize as such would be Mad Season and there all too short lived existence and only one LP and done. I was suprised how much i liked this album even with all jesse's chessy ass cornball "she went and broke my heart again' lyrics that he loves to write. every song on here is great.. as usual kiss of death knows what thee hell there doin.. altho im getting sick of gray vinyl.. it seems like that all the colored wax is anymore?? Later

MN_DrNick (November 11, 2011)

My "drink whiskey by myself because I'm depressed" album of 2011.

eatbicycles (November 11, 2011)

I don't like the term "super group." Maybe in the 70's when every frontman of every rock band would make one album together as an excuse to hang out and do drugs, the term works. Those bands usually sucked. Derek/Dominos, Blind Faith, 85% of CSN, Me First/Gimme Gimme. Just 'cause people have been in bands before, doesn't mean every future project they'll work on will be a super group if they hook up with somebody else who had been in a band.

Slow Death is just Jesse Thorson's new band, it's his sound. He got awesome people to come along and keep it from being Falling Angels B-Squad, but it's his trip.
Wild Flag is an actual collaboration between Brownstein and Timony & Weiss and Cole. They're a band, not a group. It's not a gimmick.

I think the term is cheapening. I'm cranky, need nap.

telegraphrocks (November 11, 2011)

It's good, but I'd like it more if he didn't sound like every other midwestern vocalist.

odradek (November 11, 2011)

Everything I want to say was said in the review pretty much, but I'll add that of the five best songs on the album, three were on their 2010 demo and two of those were better on the demo. Phantom Limbs is super great though and I never get tired of songs about drinking and break-ups.

kidgotham (November 11, 2011)

I really like this record.

baseball (November 11, 2011)

This isn't usually my style but I'm actually into this record. It's been getting a lot of play.

MagnetBox (November 11, 2011)

As I've said on this site before: I really wanted to love this album because I'm a huge PBT fan, but this album just isn't what I wanted. That said, Phantom Limbs is one of my favorite songs of the year.

I'm sure most of the fans already know, but there's a new PBT 7 inch available (supposedly the first in a series of 6 to be released over the next year) that can be purchased and/or streamed on A.D.D. Records website. I dig that a lot more than this album.

chawkins (November 11, 2011)

I always wanted more Pretty Boy Thorson and the Falling Angels. Not quite as good, but this quenches that thirst.

Mystereohasmono (November 11, 2011)

This review reminds me of the time that I thought this band was extremely overrated. Sure enough, they are. Whoopsie!

mattramone (November 11, 2011)

This band saved my life or whatever.

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