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Thread: Review: The Offspring (1989)

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    Exclamation Review: The Offspring (1989)

    The Offspring
    The Offspring

    Overall Score: 7/10 Originally released on vinyl in 1989 through Nemesis Records, this is the first studio album by famed punk rock band The Offspring. Singles include "I'll Be Waiting/Blackball".

    1. Jennifer Lost The War
    2. Elders
    3. Out On Patrol
    4. Crossroads
    5. Demons (A Mexican Fiesta)
    6. Beheaded
    7. Tehran
    8. A Thousand Days
    9. Blackball
    10. I'll Be Waiting
    11. Kill The President


    Jennifer Lost The War - Dealing with people's apathy to certain dramatic events (Little Miss 1565, for example), this song is one of the better ones. The lyrics seem to reflect a bit of anger at people and the media for basically having such an indifferent attitude toward traumatic events (such as the cirus fire for Little Miss 1565). Musically, there are some complicated drum set rhythms here beyond your basic eighth note hi hat/2 and 4 snare beat, as well as some nice sounding guitar parts. The bass in here isn't bad, but nothing amazing. It's the best choice for an introduction to the album, and flows well into the next track, Elders.

    Elders - Aside from being another good track on the album, this song has THE lamest ending The Offspring could've ever done. It's almost like Dexter (frontman) was writing the song, and literally just stopeed after the last verse and slapped a few chords on the end to finish things up. Big "WTF?" moment. Anyways, Elders details the general frustration with the protagonist's...elders, and they all seem to want to guide him to be a perfect person.

    Out On Patrol - This track is an oddly upbeat depressing song. It tells the story of a soldier who is...you guessed it, out on patrol, and finds himself hopelessly stranded after stepping on a landmine. Not being able to move, the lyrics ask the soldier: "what revelation have you now" now that he is trapped and doomed. It goes on to give a glimmer of light to the poor guy as the song makes mention of his friends coming to save him, only to see the enemy approaching the helpless soldier. Although it doesn't come right out and say it, you can probably guess that the dude is inevitably killed. Take note that this is the first of very few Offspring songs to contain an acoustic guitar part throughout their entire discography. Along with it, a basic drum and bass part accompany.

    Crossroads - The album takes a darker route as Crossroads comes along. It's pretty simple, really. The protagonist is at a crossroads in life, and while he doesn't want to leave the things he holds dear (the "she" in the song is suggested as may or maybe not being the love of his life), his future is pulling at him to continue down life's hard road. Nothing musically astounding here.

    Demons (A Mexican Fiesta) - Demons depicts a scene of religious sacrifice. Nothing much to be heard here, it's an average song with some nice sixteenth note hi - hat work near the end.

    Beheaded - Told from a murderer's perspective, Beheaded is about decapitation, and the thrill and pleasure the narrator gets from the act. It seems to start with killing his parents, as he doesn't approve of the negative things they say ("daddy called me a silly bore"). Then, he moves onto his girlfriend, and soon he leaves his house just looking for people to kill and collect their heads. Hm. A great song to listen to when angry, but this one doesn't really show any extreme musicianship.

    Tehran - Suggesting that the American government only cares about figures, not human life, and thus brings suffering upon itself, Tehran is one of very few political Offspring songs. The first four bars of the song contain a cool bass groove from bassist Greg K. The rest of the band shows off some fine playing throughout as well.

    A Thousand Days - Tells the story of how two lovers constantly hurt each other, and while the subject would like to let her go and have success elsewhere, he can't seem to let go. Kind of a filler track, nothing really awesome.

    Blackball - This song is some raw Offspring. Here we see a track that could stack up well with some of their stuff from Ignition onto about '97's Ixnay On The Hombre. It's an energetic song, and speaks about the "new disease", and how it has affected the world, along with remembering the world was before. Sorta confusing.

    I'll Be Waiting - Here is where the The Offspring starts to pick up a bit. It's a good prelude to the finale. This time, Dexter seems to be wishing for friendships and loves that live up to the glory, instead of being filled with lies and facades. Nice music, and the placement at the end of the album was a good idea, methinks.

    Kill The President - Some of the boys' finest playing comes from this song here. The name is misleading as singer/writer Dexter Holland says that it's not about assassination, rather than taking control of our lives. This song seems to go hand in hand with Tehran in that they both blame a lot of America's troubles from sources within. The song starts out with a semi complex drum set beat from drummer Ron Welty, continuing with a bass groove from Greg K., and then a guitar snippet from lead guiarist Noodles. Noodles later has a solo in the song.


    Overall, the album is good for what it is, which is the very first effort from a group of kids barely out of high school, trying to put out some good music. There's not a single track here that I would specifically skip on my playlist nor are there any that I would rather scratch my ears off with a brick rather than listen to them. They improve after this with their 1992 release Ignition, and 1994's Smash. Instrumentation is limited to your basic electric guitar, bass, drum set, and vocals, and, in Out On Patrol's case, an acoustic guitar. There are only a few songs out of the eleven included that showcase any more than basic musicianship, but they are more than enough to prove The Offspring's talent and cohesiveness as a group. Overall score, you may ask? 7/10. A good group of songs, with some deep subject matter and great lyrics. I recommend a borrow/rent/purchase/download if you ever come across it.
    ---------------------------------------------------------
    Also accepted are questions, comments, concerns, or snide remarks you may have for my review. It was my first ever and I'd like to hear some opinions, but don't be too harsh now.
    Last edited by Supa; 04-28-2011 at 12:02 PM.
    My Offspring
    July 2nd, 2010 - Maryland Heights, Missouri
    July 20th, 2012 - St. Louis, Missouri

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOldMark
    I used to collect old offspring bootlegs, I have them on a hard drive somewhere. Crossroads, Something to believe in, come out swinging, never gonna find me, dirty magic (electric in austrailia, and acoustic in austrailia) i definitely have.
    Mark, we're not giving up.

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    You wrote that review? I thought it was written well. I thought you copied and pasted it from a critic website about music or something!
    Quote Originally Posted by T-6005 View Post
    Reading this thread made me throw up.
    Because I'm already sick and the color scheme must have set me off. Sorry about that.
    Quote Originally Posted by XYlophonetreeZ View Post
    Also, sometimes I'm not sober. Sometimes I make threads when I'm not sober.
    Quote Originally Posted by Mega Man View Post
    You're too late. I've already infiltrated the Offspring forums. Next, it's the world!
    Quote Originally Posted by MOTO13 View Post
    Cranking it into a red solo cup while watching 40 year old re-runs of I Dream of Jeanie all the while snorting black pepper and knocking back shots of Jack.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Supa View Post
    Originally released on vinyl in 1989 by the fictitious Black Label (named after a brand of beer)
    No. Only I'll Be Waiting / Blackball 7'' was released through the ''Black Label''. This was originally released by Nemesis.

    And Ignition was released in 1992, not 1991.
    Last edited by holland25; 01-15-2010 at 03:58 AM.

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    nice review although i did think the basic musicianship comment was a bit harsh!
    whenever i learn something new it pushes some old knowledge out of my brain, remember that home wine making course when i forgot how to drive?!

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    It amazes me how dark this album is. Comparing it to the other albums, it's incredibly dark, and if it had longer and faster solos, it could very well be a metal album. And they were already very melodic with all their songs.

    I must admit thought that I never liked Jennifer Lost The War. I just never could sing along to "..they found her burned and raped" and all the other heavy parts of the lyrics.
    "Noodles, the man who put the O in Obrigado." - Dexter Holland

    "You're a sexy fucking audience!" - Noodles

    "It is the power of music, to carry one directly into the mental state of the composer. The listener has no choice, it is like hypnotism." -Beethoven

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    who cares "musically" how its presented,
    its just about the energy and fun they put into making it.
    who really cares about anything else? if your lookin for musical perfection shit, go listen to dream theater or something.
    i give this album 10 of 10

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    Quote Originally Posted by holland25 View Post
    No. Only I'll Be Waiting / Blackball 7'' was released through the ''Black Label''. This was originally released by Nemesis.

    And Ignition was released in 1992, not 1991.
    Whoops. Guess that's what guessing from the top of my head gets me. I'll correct soon.

    Quote Originally Posted by dexter12296566
    You wrote that review? I thought it was written well. I thought you copied and pasted it from a critic website about music or something!
    Nope, wrote it myself. Thanks, though!

    Quote Originally Posted by nameless
    nice review although i did think the basic musicianship comment was a bit harsh!
    Thanks, but I didn't mean it to sound bad. Just wanted to point out that they didn't whip out any crazy ridiculous bass lines or guitar solos or fills, it was all just music, now showing off or whatever. They're a talented band and could pull that stuff off (Tehran, Kill The President, etc.) but they don't overdo it. Which is a very good thing. Wasn't a bash.

    who cares "musically" how its presented,
    its just about the energy and fun they put into making it.
    who really cares about anything else? if your lookin for musical perfection shit, go listen to dream theater or something.
    i give this album 10 of 10
    That's what I was thinking as well, then I looked past the fanboy inside of me.

    I'm not looking for musical perfection, but this album is not perfect. Weird endings and odd, random song parts makes me think they were stumped a couple of times.

    Still a great purchase, and I will keep listening to it, just not the best thing ever.
    My Offspring
    July 2nd, 2010 - Maryland Heights, Missouri
    July 20th, 2012 - St. Louis, Missouri

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOldMark
    I used to collect old offspring bootlegs, I have them on a hard drive somewhere. Crossroads, Something to believe in, come out swinging, never gonna find me, dirty magic (electric in austrailia, and acoustic in austrailia) i definitely have.
    Mark, we're not giving up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Supa View Post
    That's what I was thinking as well, then I looked past the fanboy inside of me.

    I'm not looking for musical perfection, but this album is not perfect. Weird endings and odd, random song parts makes me think they were stumped a couple of times. [/color]

    so what you sayin,
    im a fan boy because im stating offspring had energy and more fun back then?
    Agian, WHO CARES (besides you) if its perfect or not. Being in a punk band isnt about how tight you play your riffs, or how perfect your song have to sound. At the time period that CD came out, alot of punk bands late late 80's and before then punk bands were nowhere near perfect.
    They are not a metal band.

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    ^But he was being objective, which was good. What's the point of doing reviews if they're all automatically awarded 10/10 just because they're Offspring records and we're Offspring fans?

    It's not a perfect record and 10/10 = perfect. He went through each song and gave reasons why it was / wasn't so good; it wasn't just a random mark, he gave reasons.

    "Energy and fun" can't be the sole criterion for 10/10; otherwise you could give loads of punk bands' albums 10/10 and there wouldn't be a benchmark.

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    Exactly, thanks.

    No album is perfect.
    My Offspring
    July 2nd, 2010 - Maryland Heights, Missouri
    July 20th, 2012 - St. Louis, Missouri

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOldMark
    I used to collect old offspring bootlegs, I have them on a hard drive somewhere. Crossroads, Something to believe in, come out swinging, never gonna find me, dirty magic (electric in austrailia, and acoustic in austrailia) i definitely have.
    Mark, we're not giving up.

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