Song of the Moment

J. Cole - Lost Ones

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Brand New - Your Favorite Weapon

The B Side makes every attempt to be a 'blog for the people, by the people'. And followers janis! and Shaqwanda have been obsessed with me reviewing Brand New for quite a while now. Shaqwanda specifically asked for me to hear this record, while janis! asked that I look at 'Deja Entendu' but followed that up by saying, "any of their stuff really". So here I am - getting to Brand New. The samples will show up a little'll have to open up a page and click 'Play All' and then you'll have the same functionality as the other ones. Okay - so these guys better be amazing. For all they hype I've now built up in my own head. These gents are a New York based band, that formed around 2000. In the 90's, half of Brand New was part of a different band called The Rookie Lot. They decided to split from the dead weight and form Brand New. This was their first album, coming out in October of 2001. It hasn't sold a TON of albums, but it was recognized enough to help them seal a new record deal with Interscope. We all know my opinion of punk/indie/emo rock. It all sounds very similar to me. These guys don't buck that trend. I could honestly not really distinguish them from Taking Back Sunday or something of that ilk. Most of that is probably just my ignorance of the genre though. Listening to this a couple times, it seems to be mostly about break ups? Like a teenage angst record about that hard high school heartbreak? I don't know - I'm just picking that up in some of the lyrics. By no means is this bad, or not easy to listen to. It just doesn't blow my mind. I wouldn't turn it off, but I wouldn't buy it. Which to me, means an average album. I'll listen to their second release sometime too...see if that tickles my fancy.

1. Shower Scene, The
2. Jude Law and a Semester Abroad
3. Sudden Death in Carolina
4. Mix Tape
5. Failure by Design
6. Last Chance to Lose Your Keys
7. Logan to Government Center
8. No Seatbelt Song, The
9. Seventy Times 7
10. Secondary
11. Magazines
12. Soco Amaretto Lime

Listen To Samples

Top 3 Tracks:
1. Soco Amaretto Lime
2. The No Seatbelt Song
3. Jude Law And A Semester Abroad

3 out of 5 stars


  1. yes, it is your ignorance of the genre that leads you to not distinguish brand new from those other bands. plus, you missed all the taking back sunday vs. brand new drama in the 00s. and most albums in that genre haven't sold a ton of albums because the 'scene' is very DIY. it doesn't matter how many albums they've sold when all the kids are downloading their songs and clamoring for shows that are selling out and buying their merch and paying hundreds of dollars for vinyl on ebay. on the site, news about brand new is as important as news about blink 182, sometimes more so. the first time i saw brand new was at what was once the Globe on North Ave in MKE, playing with Finch and The Starting Line and my friend's local band. this show got me hooked on Finch and Brand New ... and the first album of the Starting Line (lost interest after that...) that show itself was one of the best shows i ever went attended (not because of the fine acoustic quality of the venue).

    'teen angst record about that hard high school heartbreak?' fine. i'm going to stop short of saying you just don't understand. but you haven't listened enough. the lyrics aren't 'girl you broke my heart.' this isn't goldfinger covering 'is she really going out with him.' listen to '70 times 7' or 'jude law' (which is my favorite). this has more venom. more pain, even if the accompanying music doesn't quite match that - but also remember that this was the first album, and the influences at that time were pop/punk. perhaps the tone they were looking for was pain, hate, but still upbeat (ha). jesse lacey is probably my favorite lyricist. remember that conversation we had about songs where the emotion is conveyed just by the tone of the singer's voice? all of deja entendu feels like that to me. this album to a lesser extent. this album is something that listeners (fans) identify with. maybe i identified with it because i was that age, but i don't think so. i have never listened to fall out boy or taking back sunday or green day or *insert pop punk emo type band here* and thought 'THAT is how i feel' like i have with brand new. amongst a few former sub-shop employees and our friends, we all know what it means when one of us is having a 'brand new' day.

    plus the video for 'jude law' makes me nostalgic for skate & surf in asbury park.

    brand new is one of the few bands that i will still bother to - nay, make a point of - turning on, seeing live (if they would ever freakin' come around), and keeping up to date on.

    now, review the next album. then listen to this one again. lies. listen to this one again THEN review the next album. and try to get your hands on the song 'moshi moshi' because that's a good one too.

  2. I don't even know where to start there.

    Yeah, I agree. I just don't identify with the genre. Like most people I'm friends with don't identify with hip hop. I never got into punk rock back in the day, and that hinders my liking for it now. I'll fully admit I'm ignorant to the genre. And that doesn't bother me in the slightest. I mean, I have an irrational love for the Gorillaz. I got on them when no one knew who they were, and I still love everything they put out. Is their craziness for everyone? Certainly not. And I'm sure a lot of people would listen to 'Clint Eastwood' and assume they're not missing much.

    Point is, I don't have a sentimental connection with the whole genre. When I listen to this music as an "outsider" I don't feel it has anything to offer ME, personally versus any other band or genre out there. Doesn't mean I wouldn't recommend this to others, I just wouldn't be proactive in listening to it.