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The Weakerthans - Left and Leaving (Cover Artwork)

The Weakerthans

The Weakerthans: Left and LeavingLeft and Leaving (2000)
G7 Welcoming Committee Records

Reviewer Rating: 5
User Rating:


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

I remember being introduced to Propagandhi in my freshman year of high school, around the time of "Less Talk, More Rock." I loved their lyrics, but thought that their music could often be pretty much interchangeable with the rest of the Fat Wreck bands of the time. I would listen to their first .
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I remember being introduced to Propagandhi in my freshman year of high school, around the time of "Less Talk, More Rock." I loved their lyrics, but thought that their music could often be pretty much interchangeable with the rest of the Fat Wreck bands of the time. I would listen to their first two records occasionally, and on a trip to Boston, my friend picked up "Today's Empires..." and we listened to it in our hotel room. I was struck with disappointment, as it seemed like the only thing Propagandhi cared about anymore was the lyrics.

Fast forward to August 2001, when I purchased a copy of Punk Planet with John K. Sampson on the cover. I read the terrific interview in the magazine and ordered "Left and Leaving" off the internet.

This is one of the most amazing records, in my opinion, ever made. What Bob Dylan did in the late 1960's when he combined folk, rock, blues and country is what is Samson has done here with the musical styles of today. It is easy to hear the Get Up Kids in many of these songs, but also Neil Young, Hank Williams, and Bob Dylan. This record actually transcends the label of "punk rock" and moves into the realm of great music.

The main thing that makes this record so amazing is Samson's lyrics. He is probably the greatest lyricist of our time, as evidenced by the lyric sheet. If you read the lyrics without the music, they remain moving poetry, unlike some bands who seem forced to live within rhyme schemes and forced words.

I really don't believe this review does this band or this record justice. Just buy it and listen with an open mind.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
The Weakerthans - Reconstruction SiteThe Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!Alkaline Trio - GoddamnitJawbreaker - 24 Hour Revenge TherapyThe Weakerthans - FallowThe Lawrence Arms - The Greatest Story Ever ToldAgainst Me! - is Reinventing Axl RoseOperation Ivy - Operation IvyRefused - The Shape of Punk to ComeNOFX - The Decline

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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.
Sweatshopworker (September 15, 2007)

Great album. Anyway I like Fallow more. My favorite song in this one is "My Favorite Chords"

Anonymous (August 25, 2007)

This album gets full marks, well done.

I fancy they'd delight in the news, ole chap.

Anonymous (March 22, 2005)

The tunes are from the brain, heart and soul. He sings what he feels and they play catchy tunes to match. A leathal combination for those who have any clue what a great musical collaboration is. This album gets full marks, well done.

Anonymous (December 31, 2001)

I wish I could give this album infinite stars because that's what it deserves.
I believe i am one of the weakerthans biggest fans, I got this CD a month before it's release date, and I swear I haven't neglected it since. It's been played at least once a day, I may go buy another copy, apart from the LP copy I own as well. Fallow is also amazing, and the reason people find it "less of an album" from this or "different" is it was just John's songs, he wrote, and got a few friends together to record. It wasn't until it was done that they decided to be a band, tour, and rock. I used to be big on punk, and, man Left And Leaving is, and so much more. I agree with whoever said it before that JKS is one of the greatest lyricists of our time. He's a pioneer. Rock on.
- Ken Merkley

Anonymous (September 28, 2001)

I think Fallow is much better, than this, I got pretty bored with this album rather quickly. It's a good release, but it just got boring quick.

Anonymous (September 27, 2001)

Ah, I wouldn't say "Shape of Punk to Come" is a blatent metal album. The band is playing a very contorted version of hardcore, much like Black Flag and Fugazi before them, and its not only creative but an awesome listen. To me, NOFX is much more a metal band--listen to Iron Maiden and I think there's not much of an arguement.

I have "Fallow" and I like it, but its not inspiring me to buy another album. But if its as good as you kids say it is....

--Cos

Anonymous (September 26, 2001)

that refused album is awesome, but it's a BLATANT metal album. dont even argue it!! you really oughtta get Fallow by the weakerthans. it's sooo good. doesnt quite kick the arse of left and leaving though!

pj (September 26, 2001)

Hey,it's me, just wanted to make a few comments to save my ass. I didn't mean to diss Propagandhi in my review, I just haven't been able to get into their last record. I expected an amazing leap forward, and while they did move forward they didn't blow everything else out of the water. The Get-Up Kids reference: listen to "Something to write home about," and although it's not a great album, you'll hear some of what I'm talking about. Sorry if I pissed you off, and this is my first review...I hope to get better.

Anonymous (September 26, 2001)

Not to knock the Weakerthans, they're talented, it's just not my thing. My beef is with the dude who said all Propagandhi does is bitch. They play a hugely active role upholding their beliefs, don't you know. Besides, isn't bitching what it's all about?

Anonymous (September 26, 2001)

don't for get about "my brain hurts" by screeching weasel. that's probaly the best pop-punk record ever.as far as hardcore punk rock, I don't know if anything compares to "Today's Empires.." by Propaghandi.Other standouts in the last ten years have got to be "Dear You" by Jawbreaker, "Jersey's Best Dancers" by Lifetime, any maybe even "Relationship of Command" by At-the-Drive-In. I know that last one is iffy, and I will say that i only liked about half of it, but they are doing something really different from everything.

Anonymous (September 26, 2001)

whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa again. the shape of punk to come is an amazing record, no question about that, but it doesn't clearly fit into any one genre. while, yeah, i guess it could be considered a punk record sorta, when i say best punk record of the last ten years i'm talking straight up punk rock here...done the old way, the right way.

Anonymous (September 26, 2001)

Whoa whoa WHOA!

The Refused's "Shape of Punk to Come" is THE best punk record in the last 10 years.

--Cos

Anonymous (September 26, 2001)

whoa whoa whoa whoa whoa. this album is good...not great...good. but either way, your credit in the taste department took a nose dive out the window when you opened your review with a knock on propagandhi. while i admit i used to have to ignore the fat wreck sound that permeated much of their early work to really get into this band, that new album is a masterpiece and the best punk rock record to come out in the last ten years. in fact, i'd put it in some sort of a top ten of all time list. c'mon, the music is great, the guitar riffs are amazing, and the lyrics/vocals beat anything else out there. jeez, just give it another listen or something!

Anonymous (September 26, 2001)

damn! your into the "scene" for 4 years, you put out a zine for 11 issues, your in a band, but because you neglect to like Propagandhi or the Weakerthans your ignorant... damn. i'll go slit my wrist now.

Anonymous (September 25, 2001)

I just heard this for the first time and i am enjoying it quite a bit. I love the song "Aside". I think i've listened to it like 23 times now.

Kurt_F (September 25, 2001)

Uhhhhhhhh, he was IN Propagandhi. He even sang a bit. Ignorant punk.

Anonymous (September 25, 2001)

for us ignorant punks out there, what does Propagandhi have to do with the Weakerthans? Maybe you should have tied that into your review, it made no sense to me.. but I might be missing the big picture, who knows.

Anonymous (September 25, 2001)

this is my favorite album. but the review wasnt as good as it couldve been. i think im going to try to write a good one for fallow, also a fantastic album.
-travis

Anonymous (September 25, 2001)

wow you guys were saying how amazing this cd was so i decided to check it out. i had no idea what to expect, but when i listened to it, i was pleasantly surprised. this stuff is great.

Anonymous (September 25, 2001)

saying that this sounds like the get up kids puts your ability to write decent reviews in extreme jeopardy but at you least you like the record so thats a good start

Anonymous (September 24, 2001)

propagandhi sucks all they do is bitch

Anonymous (September 24, 2001)

There's something not right about this album....Well it's a great album no doubt about that, but I just can't say it's flawless.

wyld_stallyns_rule (September 24, 2001)

This is an album that you don't need to review. 'nuff said...I think...yeah, 'nuff said.

Anonymous (September 24, 2001)

what the fuck, I stopped reading after the first paragraph. you must have just smoke a big ol crack rock cause the new Propaghandi album is some of the best, most intricate, most abbrasive, most talented punk rock ever. everything about that album is amazing. I strongly suggest, PJ, that you go buy that album, get some headphones, and camp out in you bed room until you've been converted.- fathead

seek (September 24, 2001)

ok i read this before, so who is the original author?

jheisel (September 24, 2001)

this is definitely one of the best albums of 2000. so much better than fallow, which was also a great album.

check out the weakerthans website for a bunch of live mp3s and john k. samson solo stuff.

booker_pee (September 24, 2001)

One of the top ten albums ever. Better than fallow, but fallow was still good. Propagandhi beats everything in punk today with a rusty metal baseball bat, but nothing beats samson's amazing work here.

layawayplan (September 23, 2001)

Way off on the propagandhi. If you ask me, Chris is one of the best(ie most creative) guitarists in the punk scene. I you listen to the prop albums in chronological order, the change in his voice is phenomenal...he's developed one of the most commanding voices i've ever heard. And yes...TETA is for me still the best album of the year.

On to the Weakerthans...this album rules. Much better than Fallow. Fallow was kind of thrown together, while this is a much more focused, complete album.

Anonymous (September 23, 2001)

Ok, well i try not to be a prick like most of the people who post to this website, and the weakerthans -are- one of my favorite bands, but is it really neccessary to degrade one of the greater political bands of our time, propagandhi? moreover, i feel that the most recent propagandhi record is one of the more musically experimental they have produced, and i love it. in fact, i would have to close by saying you're right on about the weakerthans, but way off about propagandhi.

Anonymous (September 23, 2001)

awesome awesome record. hasnt stopped spinning on my record player sinse i got it. is "fallow" good?

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