Bracket - Novelty Forever (Cover Artwork)


Novelty Forever (1997)

Fat Wreck Chords

Bracket have always been underdogs. Even after signing to Fat Wreck Chords, the band still didn't get the recognition they deserved. They tend to be polarizing, as some people just can't stand Marty's voice. However, in the case of Novelty Forever it is the vocals which absolutely make this album work so well.

Bracket stays away from tried-and-true chord progressions on Novelty Forever in favor of some more unusual progressions. The song structures are simple, but the chord progressions keep them interesting. The thing that really stands out is when they take these interesting chord progressions--which aren't as instantly gratifying as a lot of pop-punk bands--and they put a vocal harmony over it that makes it instantly gratifying.

The vocals on this album are harmonized completely, which really helps the band's overall sound regardless of what chord progressions they use. It's just that Marty sounds a lot more interesting when he harmonizes; when he's not he can be a bit bland.

This record is definitely top-heavy, as if the band ran out of interesting ideas after they wrote half the record. The music is simple, but they play some great guitar solos on this record. The drums and bass do their job but nothing they do really stands out.

Bottom line is that this is one of the best Bracket records, and though I've always found it questionable to call them a punk band, this is an excellent power-pop record worth checking out.