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With Or Without You - Six Reasons To Drop Out (Cover Artwork)

With Or Without You

With Or Without You: Six Reasons To Drop OutSix Reasons To Drop Out (2004)
Martyr Records

Reviewer Rating: 1.5


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

I went to a high school of about roughly 800 kids, and out of those 800, I'd say at least 75 dropped out before even making it to senior year. Now, without a GED, let alone a diploma, I'm sure these kids will have terrific lifelong careers bagging my groceries, pumping my gas, and paving my roads, a.
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I went to a high school of about roughly 800 kids, and out of those 800, I'd say at least 75 dropped out before even making it to senior year. Now, without a GED, let alone a diploma, I'm sure these kids will have terrific lifelong careers bagging my groceries, pumping my gas, and paving my roads, although there's apparently a terrific new alternative to a career in public services: a career in starting a hardcore band. With Or Without You's lyrical content and overall attitude exemplifies their album title Six Reasons To Drop Out to an absolute tee.

At a meager 13 minutes, this 7-song EP manages to go through every single hardcore cliché like they're using a checklist. Lyrics about friends and unity? Check. Breakdowns? Check. Gang vocals? Check. Primitive songwriting, with little-to-no variety? Check and mate. I don't know about the rest of you, but on a hardcore record, I'd say that it's pretty self-defeating when your best track is an instrumental. "The Campaign," simple as it is, still manages to be the best example of songwriting on the entire EP. Though repetitious, the drum fills have a great groove, and the underlying clean guitar tones carry the song the rest of the way. But Explosions In The Sky they are not, as the song quickly ends in favor of "Was having the time of my life, until I realized / I was just a screw up, and I'd eventually run out of luck / Live fast die young / Anthem for the naively dumb," courtesy of their shoutout to O.J. and Michael Jackson, "Smell The Glove." Naively dumb? Well put, guys, well put. The charms of their songwriting don't end there, however. "Check Your Head" offers an arrangement of words that would put a wet spot in Charles Dickens' pants; "I don't care what you think of this band or me / I've got real friends and family / Attack my character attack my beliefs / Your not the first so do your worst / Save your breath I'll never conform / Be warned be warned."

As far as the actual music on this album is concerned, I won't be singing its praises there, either. Singer Andy Frachere comes off more as angsty nü-metal than hardcore. Some of this could be attributed to the production values of the disc, but on the whole, his voice just leaves a lot to be desired. For those who enjoy the gang singalongs, there are quite a few here that should make you happy, as they sound a whole lot better than the normal vocals. As I said before, some of the vocal difficulties could be attributed to the guitars being turned up too far, but you just get the feeling he's not a very strong vocalist any way you cut it. The rest of the instrumentation isn't strong enough to make note of either; the guitar-work is loud, but primarily slow and boring; the drumming, aside from that instrumental track, is pretty lackluster, and the bass is only existent during a few of the song intros.

At only 13 minutes, this wasn't long enough to make me go to the medicine cabinet, but I sure wouldn't advise picking this up at a record store for any reason. If breakdowns and gang vocals are your thing, there's a ton you can do that would satisfy you much better than this disappointing collection of songs. The score's only as high as it is for the instrumental track, which besides not fitting the album's mood, offered its only enjoyment. Pass.

 


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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 (June 29, 2005)

I wanna fucking drop of school

EMOHOLOCAUST (June 22, 2005)

wtf?
stole their band's name from a U2 song...
hmmm

Anonymous (June 22, 2005)

The review was witty and entertaining. Reading all of your over-sensitive bashing is pretty pathetic...

Anonymous (June 22, 2005)

Can't we all just get along?

Joe

rkl (June 20, 2005)

yeah i got my current job by lying about my qualifications. whats it going to hurt? they either check and you get fired, or they dont and you have a nice job.

Kenjamin (June 20, 2005)

next time i recommend going to a temp agency. They take 4 -5 bucks an hour out of your pay but you'll still be making 10 an hour. Or you can do what I did and just lie. Yea... like I want to make a career out of Home Depot - whatever it takes for you to hire me gramps.

Anonymous (June 20, 2005)

ironically enough you don't need a degree to be a writer. hmm...

is that what anchors wants to be? he'll need a lot of practice, and writing reviews for emo cds isn't gonna cut it!

-nfgrawker

Anonymous (June 20, 2005)

Fuck this. Go buy circle of dead children NOW.

-----Travis.

teddytexas (June 20, 2005)

ironically enough you don't need a degree to be a writer. hmm...

Anchors (June 20, 2005)

That's true, but I don't even understand why that's the case.

Something like 84% of people don't go through 4 years of college, so there should be a lot more job opportunities than their actually is. Not even just entry level positions after college, but I can't even get a fucking summer job at a grocery or sporting goods store around here because nobody is looking for just summer help.

Anonymous (June 20, 2005)

To be fair, he was talking about high school drop outs, which leaves one with waaay less opportunities than a college drop out.

Hell, these days you need a doctorite to get a job.

-benz

Anonymous (June 20, 2005)

dropouts are losers, like yesterday, who was pumpin my gas? fuckin steve jobs, didn't finish college, now look at em.

And that brett gurewitz guy, ive been lookin for someone to give me my french fries.

Granted, most dropouts don't end up that pretty, but ease off the righteous attitude jones. What's wrong with construction workers and grocery baggers?

That said, I heard this band rocks with jesus really hard, which is to say, not that much. These guys slay at youth group.

wyzo

Anchors (June 20, 2005)

If I got up one morning, and realized I had an actual presentation to do on the semicolon, I'd go right the fuck back to sleep.

Kenjamin (June 20, 2005)

In my freshmen writing 101 class i had to do a presentation on the semi-colon. Nobody gave a fuck when i told them that "semi-colons are crucial." Later in a lit class the professor spent 40 minutes discussing a "brilliant use of the semi-colon" in a piece we were reading. No one cares but I felt vindicated.

rkl (June 19, 2005)

heres some constructive criticism(from a journalism major who graduated from high school even though he was rather busy smoking pot.)

you should utlize the semi-colon, because ; rules.

Anonymous (June 19, 2005)

The writing skills needed to compose an album review are minimal. Get over yourself.

-Chinatown

Anchors (June 19, 2005)

This has nothing to do with being paid. If I end up writing for a salary someday, not even necessarily about music, that's fine, but for the time being I write because I love music, and putting bands names out there if they make good records.

Constructive criticism is important, and any writer will tell you that. There's things in my reviews I wouldn't pick up on that I'm sure plenty of other people would, and that's what I want to know about, so I can improve.

teddytexas (June 19, 2005)

why do you need constructive criticism? no one is gonna pay you to review albums. but hey maybe they will. i never once have made fun of your writing, yet you continue to make that assumption that i'm saying you're a bad writer. i like making fun of you because you're a nerd and you take it way to seriously for someone that's not even getting PAID. if you wish to continue this gay conversation you can IM me.

Anchors (June 19, 2005)

No, I don't take the internet seriously, I take my writing seriously. If you've got some constructive criticizm, that's good, and I'm more than willing to hear it. But if you're going to be a douchebag about it, I'm going to say something.

If anything is pathetic, it's that you actually counted the time between replies in two separate arguments.

Anonymous (June 19, 2005)

yeah, you write one nasty little comment about him and he spends 15 minutes (check the time elapsed between replies whenever he argues with bsd and chintown) replying.

-nfgrawker

teddytexas (June 19, 2005)

i think you're right, he takes the internet way too seriously.

Anonymous (June 18, 2005)

anchors is insecure about himself, that's why he's always so edgy.

-nfgrawker

Anchors (June 18, 2005)

Hey, at least you're proud of being a friendless 15 year old capable of getting under somebody's skin.

Proud day for you and your family.

teddytexas (June 18, 2005)

anchors i love getting a rise out of you, it's so goddamn easy.

Anonymous (June 18, 2005)

I hope Bono gives Anchors AIDS.

LMChc (June 18, 2005)

i can't say for sure because you have the cd case and WOWY don't have a website

but 'smell the glove' might be an ode to the Spinal Tap record of that name.

tylerdurden8136 (June 18, 2005)

haha, teddytexas just got his ass handed to him.

that had to be the most well thought out comeback ever seen on the org.

congrats anchors, i enjoyed reading that.

Anchors (June 17, 2005)

Teddy, let me make a few things crystal fucking clear for you.

1) If you take any of the introductions such as this one, that are meant to be amusing, as having anything more than comedic value, you're an idiot.

2) People drop out of school for a lot of reasons, could be a death in the family, could be personal illness, or it could be that the person would rather smoke pot and play video games then spend seven hours a day in school. The people in the latter category make up the vast majority, and those are the people whom I have no sympathy for. Let's be honest here, high school isn't difficult. If you do the work, not even well, you're going to graduate.

3) You seem to have a certain infatuation with me, as you comment on quite a few of my reviews here, and posts at 315hardcore. Now, I don't know quite what your deal is, maybe you're just a bored little 15 year old kids with no friends to hang out with on a Friday night, because that's what it seems to me. So go ahead, and take some more childish jabs at me, and see how far that actually gets you. Maybe you'll get some fanmail from Chinatown, but be careful, BSD keeps a pretty tight leash on him.

4) I'm glad somebody figured out that every review, every comment I make here is in a vain attempt to be 'punk rock.' (Two words, by the way) Finally, my riddle has been solved. Congrats, gumshoe.

teddytexas (June 17, 2005)

yeah making fun of people who didn't graduate highschool is awesome. and punkrock.

Fuzzy (June 17, 2005)

Making fun of blue collar workers who are far more skilled than you (IE: road pavers) is pretty lame, dude.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

the first six U2 records are fantastic. everything after is lame.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

Oh stop bitching. U2 does suck. They wish they could be as cool as the Clash, but aren't....it's a shame they are still more popular. Douchebags.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

No actually this dumbass says that cause he thinks it's "punk"and cool to say that U2 sucks.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

"okay, U2 sucks. they really actually suck"

Oh, I'm sorry, has your musical taste always been flawed or is this a more recent ailment?

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

okay, U2 sucks. they really actually suck.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

Please.....kids putting down U2. If they aren't you're thing, great, don't listen to them. But saying that they suck or whatever, that's just foolish. There are a lot of great artists who I just can't get into. I'm not going to deny their impact though. U2 will eventually be remembered as a legendary band who made incredible music. They'll be regarded as innovators, the same way people today regard the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, The Beatles. Where as, most bands that get reviewed on this website will be forgotten about within a few months. And Bono may be a pompous ass, but at least he trys to make change instead of just singing about it like most hardcore & punk bands.

punkcorekid (June 17, 2005)

i thought this cd was decent.

lou (June 17, 2005)

i second that.

slippy (June 17, 2005)

Anchors writes good reviews.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

You don't know what you're talking about. This U2 song is wonderful.

CellarDoor (June 17, 2005)

Score's for the kids knowing the names of some U2 songs. What a fucking shame.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

I enjoy Anchor's reviews. I also never thought a band like this would steal their name from a U2 song.

OC

ElVaquero (June 17, 2005)

did they actually name themselves after that godawful u2 song? what a fucking bad song. no score for that band.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

you kids...

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

You win, Anchors. Reading your arrogant, uptight posts is putting me to sleepppzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzsdddddddddd ddfnfffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff fffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff fffffffffffaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarraefffffsbvvvvvv vvvvvvvvvbvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvv

-Chinatown

(S orry for this late reply. I had fallen asleep on my keyboard.)

Anchors (June 17, 2005)

Man, you really are a sad, bitter little man.

I'm not going to address any of your misguided points, because it's obvious by the feelings of most other people that you're in the very small minority. And by very small, I mean you and BSD. You two belong together.

But you can go ahead and attack my reviews, how many I write, how long they are, and whatever else it is you want, because like I said, not a single person here would agree with you, and if they did, they'd go the opposite way out of spite.

Get real, you bitch.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

maybe that should read whos next?

who will get in a pussy wanking over anchors reviews next week?

- pussyfoot

- this comment is fucking stoopid. score is for my comment here

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

last time...bsd vs anchors...this time chinatown vs anchors

whats next you pussies. anchors wins cause this site asks him to review. no one asks you pussies, myself included to come and point out every little fucking gramatical error

- pussyfoot

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

Good at it?!?! Hahaha!

If you were good at writing album reviews, Anchors, they wouldn't all read the same way. They wouldn't make me feel like scrolling down to the bottom of the page after one paragraph.

Don't fool yourself. As of late, "Staff" status has been determined by quantity, not quality. Now, there are some good staff reviewers like Aubin, Adam, and FortyMinutesWest. But people like Sally_Field and yourself are merely "filler" staffers, people who can at least use proper grammar and don't mind cranking out a review or two (or ten, if we're going to talk about you) every once in a while.

By the way, you're as uptight and boring as Jim Rome from ESPN. Get up and take a look at the chair you're sitting on; maybe someone left an upright dildo on the seat as a joke.

-Chinatown

Anchors (June 17, 2005)

I've got all the free time in the world, and if I spent even half of that writing reviews, I could probably do about 10 a day.

The difference between us Chinatown, is I use my free time constructively, writing some reviews, because unlike you, I'm good at it. All you do is whine, and whine, and when you're all done with that, you go ahead and whine some more.

And there is not a single fucking person who frequents this site who would disagree with what I've said. So any time you want to shut up, is cool with me.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

Ironic that the guy who spends apparently all of his free time writing reviews tells me to get off the computer.

-Chinatown

Anchors (June 17, 2005)

Haha you're such a miserable little bastard.

Get off the computer, get out, and go make some friends man. Surely you can find at least one person who'd be able to tolerate you.

Well maybe not.

Anonymous (June 17, 2005)

??I don??t care what you think of this band or me / I??ve got real friends and family / Attack my character attack my beliefs / Your not the first so do your worst / Save your breath I??ll never conform / Be warned be warned.?

I'm sure the band members can at least differentiate between you're and your. Tool.

-Chinatown

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