The Oxford Set - The Oxford Set (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

The Oxford Set

The Oxford Set (2004)


There's nothing more disappointing in my book that claims to be largely influenced by `60s garage rock but just ends up sounding like modern "garage punk" fodder. I bet these dudes never even heard of Pebbles or Nuggets or Teenage Shutdown, much less `60s revival acts from the `80s like Australia's Scientists. So what we're left with are songs I could have mistaken for being by the Vines and a few Jan & Dean-styled faux-classical acoustic guitar intros, which are the best part of the album.

What really sets the Oxford Set apart from all these other bands, though, is their ability to add whiny vocals and bad lyrics about heartbreak. It's truly uncanny. I mean, what better way to write a song than add shitty lyrics to throwaway Keith Richards impressions? That way you can shove seven songs onto an album without any shred of originality. I want to say that this band is riding the trend-cycle a little too late, but then this album was released in 2004, and I'm just a little slow on the reviewing side.

At best it's mediocre background music for a teen soap opera, at its worst, the Oxford Set is slightly more annoying than getting a screwdriver shoved through your temple (thanks "Friday the 13th Part II!"). At least it's over in sixteen minutes, right?

I wanted to be nice to this album. I really did. I wanted to give it a chance. I listened to it completely twice (I know, twice!) and it only brought my opinion of it down further. If you're into cheap knockoffs, go ahead and go for it, otherwise I'd steer clear of this one.