Reviews Pissed Jeans Honeys

Pissed Jeans

Honeys

I enjoyed King of Jeans. It wasn’t great and it didn’t break much ground, but it was a solid play that I still throw on from time to time. What I find peculiar with its follow-up, Honeys, is that I don’t find myself thinking back to the last record often. Instead I mostly think about how I should be listening to Black Flag (and not the current touring version). The similarities here are pretty strong, pulling a Rollins impersonation in the faster hardcore rockers “Teenage Adult” and “Romanticize Me” and when they slow it down, such as with “Male Gaze,” utilizing choppy guitars a la Greg Ginn. At times I find myself wondering if this is meant to be a Black Flag parody record.

Of course, the band has some stark differences too. The primary one being that they’re basically a joke band. I can’t vouch for the live show but, musically speaking, the lyrics are pure Grade 2 dumb, done winkingly while singing on topics ranging from cafeteria food to laziness and avoiding doctors. It’s an intentional contrast and it’s generally an effective punch, contrasting silliness with heavy aggression, albeit one that loses some momentum the more you listen. The situation with Honeys isn’t so much that the joke wore out its effectiveness, as that it’s been done better. The faster songs like the opening “Bathroom Laughter” and the more melodic-tinged “Cathouse” are strong punk songs and a whole album with such effective melody and aggression would make for a hell of a record. (Well, a couple slowed down moments are always essential for pacing and sequencing, but you get the point.)

However, the balance here is probably 50-50 fast-slow, and the majority of the slower jams here just beat the dumb down the listener’s throat. Again, it’s a fine joke. The criticism is that Flipper did it better. Many of the choruses consist of just one or two lines repeated ad nauseam and it wears thin quickly. The drab “Chain Worker” would be tedious anywhere on the record, but putting it second just feels abusive. The faster songs are more interesting on a musical level and avoid the repetitive trappings that bring down the more drawn out songs. Pissed Jeans are more effective attacking with vitriol than they are with barbed wire.

Based on the band’s earlier materials, Honeys more or less delivers as expected. However, in the process it fails to cover new ground and it never maintains any momentum throughout the record. It definitely has its moments, but those are overshadowed by the boring slower songs.

6.7 / 10Loren
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Sub Pop

2013

6.7 / 10

6.7 / 10

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