Buck-O-Nine - 28 Teeth (Cover Artwork)


28 Teeth (1997)


It takes a good ska-punk album to reach God-like status with me. I mean, I enjoy Reel Big Fish, Less than Jake, etc, but only a few albums get past the point of "good" and enter the realm of "wonderful". Bands like Slapstick, Operation Ivy, The Sucide Machines and Goldfinger all inhabit my ska-punk hall of fame, and add to that list, Buck-o-9's "28 Teeth".

Bo9's popularity took off in 1997 during the ska craze, although they already had been toiling in their native San Diego for years. Once No Doubt, Sublime and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones took off in the mainstream, things took off for Bo9 as well. They released "28 Teeth", a fast-paced ska-punk gem that easily surpasses many of the bigger ska-punk releases of the time. "28 Teeth" yielded a minor hit with "My Town", a poppy ode to San Diego. It has an unforgettable hook, great horn parts, and great up-beat guitar. It was one of the first skaish type songs I ever heard, and it was the second ska-punk CD I ever bought. Anyway, I digress.

There are all kinds of great songs on this disc. "Nineteen", "Jennifer's Cold", "Steve Was Dead" and "Peach Fish" are all classics in my mind, and even songs that don't reach the status of the aforementioned cuts are still worth the price of the CD. "Round Kid" is a quinessential ska-punk song, "Im the Man" is the requisite Joe Jackson cover, and "Record Store" always makes me long for my old job at just that sort of establishment. Bo9 even spike this disc with a little irony, on the song "What Happened To My Radio". The song includes lyrics about bands that all sound the same, that use stupid names and are force fed to us by the labels and radio programmers. cough ska craze cough.

Anyway, I highly recommend this disc, and it's follow up, Libido. Bo9 get a bad rap for getting popular when they did, for simply being a ska-punk band with a video on MTV, but this disc is really a solid piece of work. It's not as politically charged as say, Op Ivy, nor does it have the manic energy of the Suicide Machines or Slapstick. It is simply a great party album, and it has enough punk in the mix to help it stand out from the glut of cookie-cutter ska-punk. Recommended if you like: Suicide Machines, RBF, Dance Hall Crashers, Five Iron Frenzy