Another One/The Distractions - Split [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Another One / The Distractions

Split [7-inch] (2018)

Smoking Cat

The only thing better than a great record is a great record with an interesting story behind it. This Another One/Distractions split is more inspired than your typical split seven inch. Another One was a young punk trio playing around Grand Rapids a couple of years ago. Eventually they broke up, due in large part to their drummer’s drug issues. Last year that same drummer died of an overdose. The other guys decided to revive the band and record some songs as a tribute to their fallen friend. Their intention is to release a series of split seven inches with better known bands that they like. Profits will go toward drug counseling and treatment.

The Another One side of the record is called How to Make Friends and Appreciate People, and it’s clearly an homage to the Screeching Weasel album How to Make Enemies and Irritate People. (For those of you too young to remember, the SW record title was a bastardization of the name of the best selling Dale Carnegie book How to Win Friends & Influence People.) Musically, it reminds me of Lagwagon or 88 Fingers Louie. The songs are catchy, but they don’t have your typical repetitive choruses.

The three Another One songs definitely have a sense of melancholy. “The Clinic” starts off with some seriously tense guitar before the lyrics kick in, and it also has a ripping guitar solo. Just when you expect the next verse to start, it’s over. I would probably call it pop punk, but it’s definitely on the more intense end of that spectrum. “It Takes 3” is similar and pretty dark. “K3N” is even darker, and addresses the overdose. You can feel the anguish in “Should have been 1 of us”. Like I said, it can be intense.

The Distractions side of the record is called Turned Away, in tribute to the Face to Face classic Don’t Turn Away. Their three songs are much more upbeat, with the more typical sing along choruses. “21 Questions” feels like a drinking song, and at first seems to stand in stark contrast to the Another One tunes. However, the lyric “We’ll never be too old to party/We’ll always be too young to die” fits with the overall theme. “Hungover” is song we can all relate to. It’s about being so sick that you want to die. The Distractions songs provide a nice counterpoint to the Another One songs, and keep the record from getting too depressing. This up and coming quartet from Indiana is definitely worth keeping an eye on.

I would be remiss if I didn’t talk about the actual physical record. I can’t remember a local release this nice. The small hole 45 is a bright yellow. The SW/F2F artwork is very well done and printed on heavy, full color stock. The lyrics are included, and you also get a sticker for each band and a download code. Attention was paid to the smallest detail. The Another One side is done in the classic Lookout! Style font, and The Distractions side is a Fat Wreck Chords ripoff. Even the plastic sleeve is heavy duty. Another One does not play live at this point, but it would be worth the effort it takes to seek this record out.