Strung Out - An American Paradox (Cover Artwork)

Strung Out

An American Paradox (2002)

Fat Wreck Chords

This album is average. Compared to when I usually say an album in average, I don't mean it in a bad way. I think it's an entertaining record, produced ad nauseum. After a couple listens, I softened my initially dismal opinion into one of grudging acceptance, like having a barren womb and learning to go on living. I think the early half of the record runs together. The real reason I'm not completely blasting this record is "Satellite" which saved this record for me. The middle is really the only good part of the disc apart from "Cemetery" which after not liking it, I really warmed up to. It sounds nice, I mean they produced the fucking record forever. The fact that some of the drums are triggered and are not the actual drummer (though live I would imagine they would be) is okay though I prefer bands only recording what is not too feasibly away from the live sound (all I remember from seeing SO is feedback, maybe they heard what they were playing but nobody else did). "Dig" is on here which is disappointing because I had great promise in this due to the Strung out Fat club 7 inch mainly because of "Lost Motel" which I really rocked out to. Why dig instead of Lost Motel, I dont know, I think Dig is subpar in comparison. Maybe it'll be the bonus track.

One interesting thing about this band is I have never heard a band's fans get into so many arguments over drumming. According to the (its been pulled down for now) Strung Out message board, his drumming is almost godlike and they fantasize sexually about his drumming. Kids, its punk rock. Drum drum, fill, drum through the chorus, fill, and so on. There is a reason why people are going to remember the Ramones longer than Joe Satriani. Anyone can learn how to manipulate a mechanical instrument. Its the human element that makes or breaks a great work of music.

Basically, if you're a SO fan, its decent, I do like some of the songs more now that I've heard them a few times, so I'll change my opinion from bad to alright. "Razor Sex" really makes you wonder if it was put on the record just so they could have a song called Razor Sex. I think if you can borrow it, that's what I would suggest. It's nothing amazing, so if you're on a budget, I'd save your money for the new No Use for a Name. An uneventful review for an uneventful record.

Epitaph and Fat wreck are turning out the sitcoms of the punk rock world. Entertaining and they're good, but you can only listen for a short time and it sort of leaves you empty. But we can't watch Art films all the time (why we can't watch Requiem for a dream forever I dont know) and sometimes we need average just because its better than shitty. For me, thats my version of a compliment so deal with it.