Album Review: Less Than Jake - Greetings And Salutations - Already Heard
INTERVIEW: MOOSE BLOOD
This week Canterbury emo-rock four piece Moose Blood release their debut full-length.
Entitled 'I'll Keep You In Mind, From Time To Time', the record contains eleven songs that
wear their hearts on their sleeves and is wrapped in a plethora of catchy hooks. We spoke to two fourths of the band as drummer Glenn Harvey and bassist Kyle Todd discussed the
album, working with Beau Burchell, joining up with No Sleep Records, and more.
EXCLUSIVE EP STREAM: HORA DOUSE - CRASH
The new EP from Manchester's Hora Douse, 'Crash' is streaming right here on Already Heard. Give it a listen and relive those older days when post hardcore could be a little bit twangly.
FIVES: MUST HEAR OCTOBER 2014 RELEASES
Last month we were spoilt for choice when it came to picking our must hear releases for September, and October is no different. Find out what the Already Heard team picked out as their five essential releases for October.
ALREADY HEARD VIDEO EXCLUSIVE: WE FIGHT LIKE KIDS - FALCONER
On Monday November 3rd, Midland hardcore punk band We Fight Like Kids release their
debut EP, 'Superficial Behaviour'. However we're premiering their new video for 'Falconer' right here on Already Heard.
ALREADY HEARD RECOMMENDS: ALBURN
For Scottish quartet Alburn, their latest EP ('Mouthful of Glass') has been a longtime coming. Having undergone a slight line-up since their formation in 2007, 'Mouthful of Glass'
showcases a significant amount of growth and maturity. We spoke to Pete Duthie to ask him about the bands background, that inevitable Brand New comparison, the Scottish music
scene and more.
EXCLUSIVE EP PREMIER: NOYO MATHIS - ENDURE
On first listen we fell in love Noyo Mathis and knew that 'Endure' needed to be heard. It's post hardcore meets emo meets indie meets math rock. Take a listen to the full EP right here.
INTERVIEW: NECK DEEP
Without a doubt Neck Deep are one of this years breakout bands. After kicking off the year
with the release of their debut LP, 'Wishful Thinking', the Wrexham pop-punk five piece
haven’t stopped touring since. From festival appearances throughout the UK and Europe to 2 months in North America as part of the Vans Warped Tour. We caught up with vocalist Ben Barlow and bassist Fil Thorpe-Evans at the Leeds Festival. They discussed their past festival experiences, supporting Blink-182, their up and coming UK headline tour and being
“leaders” of the UK pop-punk movement.


Album Review: Less Than Jake - Greetings And Salutations

Everyone born in the late 80’s or the early 90’s remembers Less Than Jake. Memories of parties in backgardens bubbling with adolescent fervour against the energetic backdrop of ‘History Of A Boring Town’ or ‘Johnny Quest Thinks We’re Sellouts’ no doubt the subject of nostalgic daydreams. Some might argue that the band’s very existence in the year 2012 is the proof of the audience’s willingness to give in to nostalgia. It is certainly true that the Gainesville band’s sound (a blend of ska and punk of which they were once pioneers) reached its peak around the release of ‘Losing Streak’/’Hello Rockview’ between 1996 and 1998, at which point bouncing basses, soaring horns, staccato-guitars, reggae sections and bratty vocals were all the rage. And then came the poor ‘Borders & Boundaries’, the hit-packed ‘Anthem’ and the risk-less ‘In The Out Crowd’, a progression that suggested little chance of a critical comeback.

Yet, out of nowhere, Less Than Jake landed ‘GVA FLA’ in 2008. A re-emergence album that pays homage to their hometown and brought them back to something akin to their earlier leanings. Less polish, better arrangements, sharper lyrics and a somewhat dark undertone, ‘GVA FLA’ finally gave the band some new credibility. Consequently, until 2012, Less Than Jake’s eventful eventful and uneven career was bookended by an album that restored faith in some purists, felt like the eternal teenagers were flirting with maturity, and introduced a bittersweet edge to their songwriting. It was not to last.

Indeed, with ‘Greetings And Salutations’, Less Than Jake continue their career-spanning tendency towards inconsistency. The qualities and faults of their latest offering are largely predictable, having remained the same for the last three quarters of their career: catchy, up-tempo, polished yet uninspiring and tame. Somewhat paradoxically, the best moments on the album come from two polar opposites. ‘Goodbye Mr. Personality’ revels in its mid-tempo, the meaty bass lines of groove, the palm-muted half-riff and the sassy vocals while, on the other hand, ‘I Can’t Yell Any Louder’ is a fast-paced romp executed with youthful resolution. Yet these are merely good tracks amidst an ocean of averageness.

Unfortunately, too much ofGreetings And Salutations is derivative and ultimately a disappointment in comparison to the step in the right direction ‘GVA FLA’ represented. There is little enjoyment in seeing the band try to emulate past successes and be satisfied with middle-of-the-road composition. Also, you can only get away with repeating the chorus of ‘Done And Dusted’ a couple dozens of times before it gets from “fairly enjoyable” to insatiable irritation. Fans of the band might find consolation in some of its highs but amateurs surely won’t be fooled.

2.5/5

'Greeting And Salutations' byLess Than Jake is released on October 16th via Rude Records/Sleep It Off Records.

Less Than Jake links: Website|Facebook|Twitter

Words by James ‘Bearclaw’ Lewis (@swissbearclaw)

blog comments powered by Disqus