Hot Rod Circuit - Been There, Smoked That (Cover Artwork)

Hot Rod Circuit

Hot Rod Circuit: Been There, Smoked ThatBeen There, Smoked That (2002)
Triple Crown Records

Reviewer Rating: 3

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

Before Hot Rod Circuit were known worldwide, before Hot Rod Circuit were part of the star-studded Vagrant roster, and basically before Hot Rod Circuit were popular, they put out a self-titled EP back in the summer of 1999. I know because they gave me one when I booked them a show on their first eve.

Before Hot Rod Circuit were known worldwide, before Hot Rod Circuit were part of the star-studded Vagrant roster, and basically before Hot Rod Circuit were popular, they put out a self-titled EP back in the summer of 1999. I know because they gave me one when I booked them a show on their first ever tour that same summer. The CD, limited to merely 2000 copies, captured the band's intensity and inherent catchiness in it's scant five tracks. The band, in my opinion, has yet to top this EP, so I'm happy to say that it's been re-released as "Been There Smoked That" along with a ton of other previously unavailable material.

First up on this retrospective is the aforementioned EP. The songs all sound as good as I remembered them, but the only downside is the recording quality is somewhat lacking. I hoped that they would've polished these up a bit for the re-release, but I guess they wanted to keep that raw sound they had back then. Either way, all five songs make me yearn for 1999 again, with their gritty emo-punk hooks firmly retrenched in my mind.

Next up on the CD are five songs the band recorded as Antidote, a band predating Hot Rod Circuit by a few months. Songs like "Sadie Hawkins" fall more into the pop punk category, but you can catch shades of HRC in tracks like "Master Control Program." Quite a neat peek into the band's history.

The CD then spits out three live acoustic songs in a row, recorded during the band's 2000 tour with the New Amsterdams. The material carries over surprisingly well into an acoustic setting, and makes me wish that the tour would've played somewhere close to me.

The CD finishes off with two cover songs. The first is the group's cover of Fudge's "Patty Hearst Machine Gun" off their split CD with This Year's Model. I have never heard the original, but this cover sounds pretty sloppy to me. The other cover is a cover of AC/DC's "Sin City" off the "I Love Metal" compilation, and this also sounds pretty sloppy. I have a feeling that when this band is in the studio late at night, surrounded by weed and beer, these cover songs are what comes out.

All in all, this CD is a pretty comprehensive document of the band's early years. My only serious gripe is the absolutely terrible artwork. Had I seen this in a store I would have never picked it up had I not known it was Hot Rod Circuit. But in the band's defense, they've always had questionable album artwork [pre-Vagrant, at least] - anyone remember the riding lawnmower on the cover of one of their albums? Exactly.

To sum up all this rambling in one sentence - if you're a fan of the band I highly recommend this to you to complete your collection.

Richard Simmons


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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.
Anonymous (January 10, 2003)

I thought your review was funny, now I realize that you are a twit.


Anonymous (January 10, 2003)

I'm ryan, you might remember me from the review of Thursday/Planes at the rave...i just wanted to say...the cover of this cd FUCKING RULES!!! SHROOMS!!! GANJA EVERYWHERE! Not that i wasn't into em before, but i have gained so much more respect for HRC through this cd...that is all

Luzzew (January 10, 2003)

"life weights"

Wow, look at that, the cigarettes are affecting my ability to type correctly....


Luzzew (January 10, 2003)

I smoke, have for years.... I also work out, and life weights..... I can tell you right now that I can lift a 30lb curl bar.... *lol* to think that someone couldn't if funny.... to think that they can't because they smoke is hillarious... last I checked, smoking did not decrease your strength or muscle mass....

Is that what the Truth commericals are saying these days? ;)


Anonymous (January 10, 2003)


Anonymous (January 10, 2003)

Yeah, brah, we're all about lifting weights here. Like, you can't lift as much as me dude.

Anonymous (January 10, 2003)

i was refering to the guy who said i watched too many "Truth" comercials....thats not it....i used to drink heavily anbd i got out of shape...even when i worked out...but when i quit my energy and shape were a billion times better. smoking is even worse...my friend smoked a pack a day and he couldn't even lift a 30 lb curl!

Anonymous (January 10, 2003)

nobody was acting tough because they drank

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

Like I said, there is nothing wrong with it or any drugs, just don't act like a tough guy thinking that you're tough because you drink...it's laughable.

waste_elite (January 9, 2003)

"Drinking so that you can escape your problems is weakness. Drinking to make girls look good is weakness. I wanna fuck my girlfriend, not puke all over her."

uhh, what about drinking because it's fun?

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

Hahahahahahaha, Emonews.com

Unfortunately there's tons of it. HRC ain't half bad though

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

I am a diehard HRC fan and I admit that some of their stuff is boring. But if you listen to "If It's cool with you, it's cool with me", it is a great cd. But "the pharmisict" is a great song off of their second latest release. This cd is great by the way

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

Thank you for visiting EmoNews.com, where our last 5 album reviews include the stunning PUNK artists Hot Rod Circuit, Slowride/Eniac, Jimmy Eat World, Dashboard Confessional, and a comp with Midtown!!!

jheisel (January 9, 2003)

"limited" to 2000, hahaha

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

Every review has a bunch of people saying "This sucks".

How annoying.

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

*lung disease, sorry, must be all those drugs i did

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

What? weakest link? everything will fuck up your body you these days. Breathing the air can give you lund disease, eating fatty foods can clog your arteries, being in the sun can give you skin cancer. just like drinking can 'mess your body up' or whatever. I don't tell someone who likes to sunbathe, "oooh, let's sunbathe so we can look good and get cancer at the same time!"
and i don't drink to forget my problems, enough said, and girls look good enough to me without alcohol. However alcohol will make girls who normally look ok look even better. And puking all over a girl? never happened to me, I cum all over them..

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

Jeezz. dude, sorry if i like being in good shape and i like my body. if you wanna self destruct that's fine. I mean, I'm pro all drug legalization, i think it's your fucking right to do what u want. But that doesn't mean it's not stupid. Just know that you are the weakest link. Drinking so that you can escape your problems is weakness. Drinking to make girls look good is weakness. I wanna fuck my girlfriend, not puke all over her.

Sticky_Floor (January 9, 2003)

that is some shitty artwork. Reminds me of Alice in Wonderland (I just finished wathcing that in Sociology).

The title of the record sounds like it's a fucking Dre or SNoop Dogg record. It seems like the downfall of Wester Civilization. Decadence.

waste_elite (January 9, 2003)

the D7 artwork makes this look like Van Gogh

Anonymous (January 9, 2003)

"smoking sooooo cool....let's like totally become weak, lung fucked smelly peices of garbage!"

This kid has been watching too many 'Truth' and 'My anti-drug is...' commercials. Run along and play little one. I'm going out back to smoke this spliff...

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

smoking sooooo cool....let's like totally become weak, lung fucked smelly peices of garbage!

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

"D7 or these guys? Who has the worse cover? Come, be honest."

fuck, i just can't decide between the two of them

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

a firm 5 because I've never heard this band.

I, for one, think the album title kicks ass. Smoking things is cool. Especially cigarrettes. They're all about reducing your anger levels to a nice indifferent hum.

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

D7 or these guys? Who has the worse cover? Come, be honest.

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

I like the cover. Reminds me of the time i dropped A and went up to Red Rocks. eerily reminiscent.

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

I agree!

orkj (January 8, 2003)

this is not the worst album title, its still "bad mother trucker"

krowdsurf (January 8, 2003)

Is this a straight-edge band? I can't tell.

maverick (January 8, 2003)

To Kurt_F:

It's the first song, bro.


Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

This band sucks

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

I heard "Radiation Suit" and thought immediately it would be a radio hit, i guess they didn't get a hold of it. Don't like this band at all.

Kurt_F (January 8, 2003)

Does the cd have "Very Best Friend"? Quite possibly the best HRC song ever.

"the worst has come and it will never get better"

Boo yeah.

Anonymous (January 8, 2003)

I meant unless it would be great.

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

Ok, I agree that if you don't like it enough, just don't buy it. Not spend a certain amount depending on how much you like it. But to say you won't spend any money unless it's your favorite is retarded.

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

How the hell could any of you say "I'll buy it if it only costs $10." That record better be one of my faves if more than a dime goes to it. You seem like you're all rich kids.

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

That five song EP was really good. The full length that came out after that "If I knew now what I knew then" was even better. However, everyone needs money, so I ended up selling them to the record store, I kinda regret it though.

-green run brad

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

Great review,CRAPPY BAND !!! I loved the 6-7 songs I downloaded by them when I learned they were playing a show with Thrice,FSF,and Recover.But when I saw them,they nearly put me to sleep-they were uninspired,unenergetic,and generic,what the hell ? Plus they didn't fit in with the lineup at all.ButI'll probably buy this,just to check it out.

As long as it's like $10.

punky (January 7, 2003)

wizo-uuarrgghh !

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

I have their latest CD and it is BORING.

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

Cover sucks, title sucks, band sucks, Scott's review notwithstanding. Fuck this.

soulbleed (January 7, 2003)

heh, i doubt anyone who even posted a comment to this has _heard_ the cd, so once again, shut up.

considering i didn't think hot rod circuit reached their creative peak until their second full length album, this release doesn't help in convincing me otherwise. unless you're a diehard, i'd advise you pay more attention to their later releases.

waste_elite (January 7, 2003)

the album cover makes me eyes hurt

Hamish (January 7, 2003)

Yeah, I second the "boring" comment. This band is about as uninspired as they come. And the album title does really suck.

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

Why is this band so boring?

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

what the??!!!??? is this a dre record?

Anonymous (January 7, 2003)

Worst album title ever.


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