Glassjaw - Worship and Tribute (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick


Worship and Tribute (2002)


Glassjaw. What can you say about Glassjaw?

Well, their debut release on Roadrunner (and technically, their second release overall) "Everything You Ever Wanted to Know about Silence" could be best described as an aural temper tantrum. Explosive rhythms, frenetic guitar and a vocals that barely sounded rehearsed. [1] And I mean that, when Daryl broke into a sudden burst of piercing screams, it really sounded like it was unplanned. Probably one of the best things about that excellent record was it's spontaneous and barely controlled rage.

So, fast forward two years. Roadrunner is defunct, and a band without a label jumps to Warner Brothers, for their second major label release "Worship and Tribute", with Warner, probably thinking they have the next Deftones. [2]

"Worship and Tribute" isn't the Deftones; in fact, it shares little with any other heavy act, including Glassjaw's previous records.

I hated it.

Well, it's a fair assessment at first glance; gone are the viciously straightforward lyrics, the freakouts, and the raw production. Now produced by the guy who produced bands like Korn, it's got a slicker, dangerously-close-to-nu-metal sound.

I hated that (and I still do)

But, devoted guy that I am, I persevered.[3] Listening to the record over and over, until the subtleties hit me; the good tracks are spectacular. The subtle blend of Fugazi and Minor Threat that permeates Tip Your Bartender, the soaring, delirium of Mu Empire, the restrained anthemic Ape Does Mil, and of course, the noise and melody of Stuck Pig. Other tracks like Must've Run All Day play the sounds of a somewhat heavier Sparta. [4]

Unfortunately, the new spirit of experimentation, while yielding some incredible new tracks, does result in some failed attempts. It's bound to happen, but it's nevertheless disappointing; Trailer Park Jesus and Calvacade sound like sloppy alt.rock, and the drug-tinged, dynamic Two Tabs of Mescaline comes almost too late to stave off boredom.

After that, I didn't hate it, but it isn't warranting the endless repeats that Everything.. wrought. Everything... was a five star album. This isn't, but it's still damn good, and I highly recommend it.


[1] - I want everyone to take notice of how I avoided calling it any type of core.
[2] - Major label A&R people scare me a little
[3] - Aren't you lucky?
[4] - Not At the Drive-In, Sparta. I know every reviewer on earth likes to name drop ATDI, but I'm so behind the times that I'm name dropping Sparta.