Reviews Teenage Bottlerocket Stealing The Covers

Teenage Bottlerocket

Stealing The Covers

Many have commented about loving the idea behind Teenage Bottlerocket's all-covers record Stealing The Covers, and even though cover albums usually have everyone sending the puke emoji as a review, I have to agree with the majority on this one. Bottlerocket aren’t a parody band and they aren’t as disillusioned as people think; this record was a super clever idea for a band like them. I imagine Stealing the Covers is what it’s like riding around in the van with them on tour as they sing along to their favorite songs. Plus, this record really speaks volumes to me about the kind of band they are. Bottlerocket aren’t rock-stars or full of themselves; they’re just a group of dudes who believe in having fun, listening to good music, and sharing it with everyone. Stealing the Covers is about using their platform of fans and exposure to share the stage with bands that many of us haven't heard of. Bottlerocket are embodying what punk was always supposed to be about; an inclusive, support outlet for just being yourself. 

“The Way I Know” is a great opener—although, starting a record off with woah-ohs is never a bad thing in my book. There’s something overly catchy and classic about a good woah-oh in a punk song. “Back and Forth” is an aggressively catchy song; the lyrics are so simple you should hate the song, but Bottlerocket are masterminds of taking a simple hook and making it stick like glue in your brain. Plus, it’s a song about wanting someone back and fits in perfectly with the Teenage Bottlerocket aesthetic. And no punk record would be complete without a very Descendents’ era style punk song, which if you couldn’t tell from the title alone, is exactly what “College Town” delivers. Plus there's an honorable mention to the solid stream of guitar riffs near the song’s ending.

My favorite track on the record is “Don’t Go”—a song that really highlights where Bottlerocket pulled influence from. The overlapping lyrics and chorus at the end of the song is possibly the best musical moment on the entire record. I love the style of “Robocop is a Halfbreed Sellout”—This song is an example of why punk remains in its own weird, musical realm. “Shit Fuck God Damn” is a classic, short Teenage Bottlerocket interlude song. Very much like the band, you can either take it or leave it. 

“Alien Motion Technology” and “It Came from the Radio” are catchy as hell songs that have a Bottlerocket influence written all over them from the song titles to the fast chords. “Gay Parade” gives me a Screeching Weasel “I Wanna Be A Homosexual” vibe; and say what you will about weasels in bands, but both songs are pretty damn good. The admittedly cute, silly song “Hat Nerd” is a Bottlerocket record essential. “Why the Big Pause” is a simple, borderline humorous song not only ending the record but uplifting us all after two bitter-sweet tracks before it. “My Very Best” and “I Kill Butterflies” are two darker tracks from Bottlerocket’s usual work. Not that Bottlerocket lacks depth, but there’s usually an overly, catchy flare that distracts from that dark depth. I like these songs in that respect though; because we all know even a fun-driven band like Bottelrocket isn't immune to darker times. That being said, we should all take a note from this record and remember—don’t take things too seriously, keep having fun, and support each other. 

7.9 / 10Kristen Swanson
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Tor Johnson Records
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7.9 / 10

7.9 / 10

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