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Say Anything - ...Is a Real Boy [reissue] (Cover Artwork)

Say Anything

Say Anything: ...Is a Real Boy [reissue]...Is a Real Boy [reissue] (2006)
Sony Music Entertainment

Reviewer Rating: 3.5
User Rating:


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

Ah, reissues, the latest trend to hit the scene, milking fans for all they're worth by holding out on extras until a later, undisclosed date, or packaging them with a re-release of the full-length in order to retail the price as high as possible. Such a red-eyed capitalistic approach for independent.
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Ah, reissues, the latest trend to hit the scene, milking fans for all they're worth by holding out on extras until a later, undisclosed date, or packaging them with a re-release of the full-length in order to retail the price as high as possible. Such a red-eyed capitalistic approach for independent labels, who I suppose aren't necessarily partaking in the ethos of independent labels (not that J Records is independent in the actual business sense, but this rant needs placement somewhere). I see reissues only worth the price if the extras are worth buying alone at that price, or if a remixing/remastering/both job was drastically in need.

Say Anything esclated nearly to the top of the 21st century "scene" pile with 2004's ...Is a Real Boy, a "rock opera" orchestrated by the young, troubled Max Bemis who'd already written and recorded several now-out-of-print releases in years prior. Bemis' quirky, Piebald-influenced anthems gained a massive following in the months following the release (perhaps in assistance with gushing hype in a post-Music Mend[ing] Broken Hearts world), with the man eventually coming to be known as the emo Jesus Christ in some's eyes. From the band's popularity spurred a sudden signing to J Records, home of such like-minded peers as Kenny G and Jamie Foxx (and, well, on a serious note, Whitney Houston to an extent). What better way to kick it off than with a reissue of the celebrated album?

As a review of the agreeably great, original release is already available here, we'll focus on this as a reissue itself.

My first issue with this particular idea is the distribution. Doghouse Records runs through Lumberjack/Mordam, who works with "hundreds of independent music stores, small chains, and other independent distributors throughout the world [...], [and] with national chains and one-stops to ensure the best possible distribution network," and therefore was already quite easily available. Was there some sort of proverbial bridge between Target and Best Buy desperately in need of construction? Seemingly, J thought so.

What potentially makes buying ...Is a Real Boy again, however, is not its suddenly (more) widespread accessibility; it's the bonus features. Here, it's a second disc cleverly entitled ...Was a Real Boy, a 7-song, 24-minute EP of sorts recorded approximately half a year after ...Is a Real Boy's release as demos for a possible AIDS charity record. The idea was put on the shelf, however, with the band holding off on the official recording and release until "when (hopefully) a bunch of people know the band and [they] can scrounge up a considerable chunk of change for the good of...well, whatever."

Given that situation, ...Was a Real Boy is quite good. The songs are remixed and remastered from the original leak and sound nearly as sonically complete as most anything off the Tim O'Heir-produced full-length. "Wow, I Can Get Sexual Too" is as perverted and poppy as anything Bemis / the band's written, though the xylophone-esque keyboards are a bit overbearing. "Metal Now" and "I Will Never Write An Obligatory Song..." both close out the disc admirably, as these are more charged than the rest of the material preceding it, especially the latter. Granted, nothing here is as powerful or alternating as the strongest tracks on ...Is a Real Boy ("Belt," "Admit It!!!," etc.), and there hardly seems to be room for cohesion on ...Was a Real Boy, but individually these songs are nearly all well-written, catchy, and sly enough, which are by this point Say Anything trademarks.

In effect, the reissue of ...Is a Real Boy is hardly terrible when viewed as a solid, slightly overpriced mini-album of completely new material from Say Anything, and for those who never bought the original to begin with, it's simply a wonderful bonus.

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Wow, I Can Get Sexual Too

 

 
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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.
scruff207 (June 29, 2010)

such a great albulm. Nothign bad about this one. I definatly suggest the song Little girls.

mike_litt69 (March 27, 2007)

that is some nice wood! score is for the wood!

GlassPipeMurder (October 21, 2006)

"Wow, I Can Get Sexual Too" is awesome. The double-disc is definitely worth it. The two cds complement each other very well.

Anonymous (April 24, 2006)

a reissue that is worth the money. bravo, say anything.

i got lucky and paid the used price for either a new cd or a cd that the previous owner had taken AWESOME care of.

Anonymous (April 6, 2006)

Max answers all his fans questions. Check out the interview: http://www.mtvu.com/music/backstage_pass/

HeresLookinAtYou (March 31, 2006)

"Anyway, my main gripe with Say Anything's much un-needed reissue is that it's only been a year since this trendy garbage was released and it's so obviously a ploy to steal more money from the fans. Reissues should be reserved for albums that, ahem, NEED to be reissued, ie: Not a major label band who crapped out a record a year ago.

-Will"

How is it stealing money? It's not like the record label is going to your house, knocking on your door, kicking you in the nuts, stealing your wallet and running away. It's the fans choice if they want to go purchase it. If their stupid enough to even cough up the money nowadays, then chances are they are a) extremely dedicated fans b) don't mind paying 15 bucks or however much CD's cost now c) don't feel like waiting for it to leak onto whatever downloading program they have or d) the aforementioned "stupid"

There...you lose

4indie (March 8, 2006)

Say anything is going to be featured on mtvU’s the Backstage Pass. Right now mtvU is taking questions from fans to ask the band during the interview. They are taking questions until 3/14. Here’s the link: http://www.mtvu.com/music/backstage_pass/questions.jhtml

Anonymous (March 5, 2006)

Great album start to finish. I think it needed to be rereleased seeing as I couldn't find it anywhere.

Anonymous (March 3, 2006)

my roommate had a band called say anything right before max started releasing stuff. he therefore hates this band without listening and finding out their version is better than his was.

Hmm... but it's not even a clever or original name. It's a terrible band name, just named after the most mediocre overrated drivel from the 80s. Your friend should chill out and kick himself in the ass for thinking it was a good name.

Great band and album, though.

Anonymous (March 3, 2006)

Truly amazing album. If you don't appreciate this album you need to develop Bi-Polar disease.

Anonymous (March 2, 2006)

I searched for the original forever and couldn't find it. Chain stores, 'mom n' pop' record stores, and no one had it. I hope I find it now though.

skolarx (March 2, 2006)

my roommate had a band called say anything right before max started releasing stuff. he therefore hates this band without listening and finding out their version is better than his was. i got this a few weeks ago and thought the songs on th ep are on average stronger than the material on the full length itself

logan (March 2, 2006)

I am kind of glad to see the re-issue.. well for one, living in Canada... I have never seen this record available in stores. By stores I mean 'chain stores' and not your regular mom-and-pop shabang. ANYHOW... I got into this record way too late and it's honestly brilliant from start to finish.. Seeing them sign to J will hopefully let them expand their horizons and actually make something out of this mess of a music industry. The songs are catchy and seamless and I hope they blow up to the point where Doghouse will feel horrible for letting go of the next big thing..... again. (... and no i'm not talking about all-american rejects)

Anonymous (March 1, 2006)

Dude. NO album should be reissued until Aus Rotten's "The system works...for them" gets put back on vinyl. The only version of that classic album still in print is the cassette version from spain.

Anonymous (March 1, 2006)

The band > The movie

I still like John Cusack, though. Just not that piece of Crowe shit.

benz (March 1, 2006)

I agree. I can't think of the name of this band without thinking of that lame ass movie. but this album is still good though.

Anonymous (March 1, 2006)

ughhhh this is another band that i hate the name - well in this case the name/album. just say it: say anything is a real boy noo

Scruffy (March 1, 2006)

This album is amazing. Didn't really need a reissue, but at least the reissue happened because they signed to a major and the major did it, rather than it being released by the same label that released the old one.
Also, the 7 new songs are pretty good. I got them off iTunes. A little more throwaway than the songs on the album, which were genius, but good nonetheless.

benz (February 28, 2006)

I downloaded the new bonus tracks from iTunes. If you liked the original album, you'll like those songs. Score's for people that hate on iTunes, for whatever reason.

mjg (February 28, 2006)

did anyone else who heard the album thought it was too long?

the songs seemed to me to be dragged out too much. also, the lack of real lyrical content on these endings, mainly vocal fills and "woahs" and "ohs" really ran itself into the ground quickly. if this album was 15 minutes shorter i could handle listening to it.

jamespastepunk (February 28, 2006)

Am I the only one who missed out on Say Anything the first time around?

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

Any Reissue automatically deserves a 1.

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

overrated.

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

i think you are just jealous its not yours...

branden (February 28, 2006)

i could go for a four wheel vibe/924 forestville st reissue

say anything definitely needs it more though

lou (February 28, 2006)

the only thing that bugs me is that they discouraged people from downloading the vs. AIDS demos because they were supposed to be for chairty. but it's their music and they can do as they please with it.

the guy gets a bad wrap because of all the hype this band has gotten (see review for example) coupled with the fact that he seems to be kind of a head case.

the new stuff is pretty good though. i bought it for mygirlfriend when it was supposed to come out in october so i could get my copy of the original release back. and i'll probably be in pittsburgh and cleveland on may 9th and 10th, respectively.

at least he didn't sign to drive thru when he was 14.

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

Dear Darkstarm,

How's it going, old fellow?

The offensive tone of your last letter has me wondering what ever happened to our friendship. If you don't want me to keep sending you naked pictures of myself, just tell me, but you should stop sending me those photos of you teasing an asian ladyboy's cock.

Anyway, my main gripe with Say Anything's much un-needed reissue is that it's only been a year since this trendy garbage was released and it's so obviously a ploy to steal more money from the fans. Reissues should be reserved for albums that, ahem, NEED to be reissued, ie: Not a major label band who crapped out a record a year ago.

-Will

PS- Whatever came of your plans to take voyeur pictures of your mom undressing? I hope you know how weird that is!

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

this album is a reissue do to a label change. i didn't read that in the article because i didnt read the article because i hate this site and everyone who reads it's guts because you're all pathetic losers.

-pinilla

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

the reissue has been out for months in Canada, or atleast the cities I've been to which was a kool find then although I had heard the bonus crap already, good discs though, different than most other shit out there in approach to making music

etwiels88 (February 28, 2006)

Still into this album. I can't find my old copy though...

historypeats (February 28, 2006)

In all seriousness, is this going to have the DRM shit that's popping up on all of this giant conglomerate label's CDs?

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

I haven't heard it yet, but how do the original 13 songs sound remastered? Just as good, worse, better, or is there really no difference? I never bought the album, (though I have listened to it in its entirety on many accounts) but am strongly considering picking this one up.

colin (February 28, 2006)

as if one release wasn't bad enough.

opened_ground (February 28, 2006)

I was under the impression that the new lumberjack takeover of Mordam was putting lots of records in limbo and lots of labels were jumping ship.

darkstarm (February 28, 2006)

Dear Will,

Nobody said this was a classic punk record. Shut your fucking mouth.

Love,
Chris

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

Oh fuck! I've been waiting YEARS for this reissue of an unaguably CLASSIC punk record!

-Will

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

Great review, good band.

fattony (February 28, 2006)

I love "Wow I Can Get Sexual Too." I wish they would have just recorded a new album, since they apparently have 7 completed songs. They just needed a few more to make this re-release unnecessary.

iheartagainstme (February 28, 2006)

only 7 new songs? that's dumb, but i'll still buy it.

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

this album is an anomaly in my record collection. I don't listen to much else like it at all, but let me quote D4 and say:

"this shit is genius"

good day.

DarrenMcLeod (February 28, 2006)

I really liked ...Is A Real Boy, but ...Was A Real Boy didn't really catch on with me.

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

When I heard this band at first I thought "this shit is so weird and random, I can't get into it." Then I listened a few more times, and a few more. Now, when I take it out of my car cd player and put something, anything, else in, it just doesn't quite fill the void.

Whether you hate this band or not, hate his voice, etc. you have to really sit back and say, damn this shit is original. The guitars are smart and play off each other perfectly. The arrangements are unconventional but still make sense in a pop song way, and the lyrical content is witty and unique. They also have the ability to make 5 minute songs fly by, and I don't like long songs.

This band has the whole package, which is nice. So many good musicians out there in bands that write shitty songs with lyrics I've heard 3754375 times.

I think this band will only get better with age.

Anonymous (February 28, 2006)

meh, i'm comfortable with the original release if all the "bonus track" songs aren't that great.

say anything are a damn fine band.

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