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Reviews

Me First And The Gimme Gimmes – Sing In Japanese EP

September 12, 2011
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Me First And The Gimme Gimmes

Sing In Japanese EP

Maintaining their recent penchant for themed EPs based around tours as opposed to overwrought full-lengths, ultimate punk-rock cover band Me First And The Gimme Gimmes stretch out a little with this latest six-song stint, tackling some truly foreign material. As its title spells out, Sing In Japanese finds the quintet covering Japanese tunes by acts such as the Tigers, the Blue Hearts and Tulip with their inimitable punk-rock flair. As a listener, having no foundation with these bands means very little however, because once the Gimme Gimmes’ bouncy, mid-’90s pop-punk rock takes hold, even the most alien of songs sounds very familiar. In fact, it's somewhat of a bonus, given that we have no bearings to compare against, thereby making every one of these 16 minutes invigoratingly light and new. Aside from the obligatory winks such as aping Social Distortion's “Story Of My Life” during Takuro Yoshida's “Kekkon Shiyoyo,” Sing In Japanese is an entirely fun, familiar and bold venture. Sure, there are absolutely no surprises (other than hearing vocalist Spike Slawson nail the lingo so well) but this time around, the band have found just enough of a twist to breathe life back into a one-trick pony who were in danger of turning into an old, grey mare.

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“22 Sai No Wakare”

Written by Keith Carman

HQ: Toronto, Ontario, Canada   Skulking around the Canadian music scene as a writer and musician for many moons, somehow (namely thousands of dollars in bribes they call “tuition”) I managed to convince the University of Toronto to issue me a degree in English whereby I begat editing for local rags. That led to a “career—as in subsidized by hard labour—whereby I've been pecking out music, business and special features articles/reviews for a variety of international publications but mainly here in the Great White North. People don't tend to trust the deadline-meeting abilities of those they think still live surrounded by moose and igloos. Can't blame them...sometimes all that seal blubber makes the keys on the typewriter stick. For fun, I've managed to tour North America in a horribly-forgettable pop/punk band before joining a horribly-forgettable punk rock 'n' roll band. Surprisingly, we've been able to take on North America and Europe in the onslaught of blandness. At that, why the hell would Alternative Press take me on? Sheer pressure. After pestering Scott Heisel at the behest of adored colleague/AP stringer Samuel Sutherland, Mr. Heisel eventually realized he was in a lose-lose situation; it was probably better to add me to the roster than field even more queries of, “Did you read my shit yet?”   10 ALL-TIME ALBUMS: Misfits - Box Set Hellacopters - By The Grace Of God Zeke - Dirty Sanchez Turbonegro - Ass Cobra Slayer - Reign In Blood Jawbreaker - Dear You Hookers - Black Visions Of Crimson Wisdom Necros - Tangled Up Suicidal Tendencies - How Will I Laugh Tomorrow Rocket From The Crypt - Live From Camp X-Ray