Monday, February 1, 2010

Review #55: Seaweed - Despised (1991)


Year: 1991
Genre: Punk Rock
Sub-Genres: Post-Punk, Grunge, Hardcore
Label: Sub-Pop Records
Tracks: 8
Length: 28 Minutes (Medium-Length)
Style: Emotional
My Rating: 7/8

Seaweed is a punk rock/grunge band from Tacoma, in the legendary state of Washington. The band was formed in 1989 by a group of kids who had been going to see local hardcore shows since the 4th grade! They released a series of 7" singles and EPs, and then an LP in 1990. This is their second LP, and it's called "Despised". The album contains a lot of new songs, but the last four are from the LP before it.

1. Selfish
A fast opener that ensures quality for the duration of the record. There's a slower mid-section two-thirds through the song. The chorus goes "Whoa, whoa, this guy before you... but this instinct you feel... whoa, whoa, this guy before you... but for what?". Contains a more uplifting sounding final part.

2. One Out of Four
The most well-known song from this album (probably because they made a music video for it which was featured on the Sub-Pop Video Program). Really catchy chorus. The song has a generally slow tempo compared the the song before it. A mid-section that reminds me of the one from "What's Your Problem" by the Circle Jerks. Very good song.

3. Rethink
Even slower than "One Out of Four". Amazing vocals and riff on this one.

4. Stale
Medium tempo. Nice solo which pretty much consists of two notes repeated again and again (but still sounds legit). The album's title comes from the line "I'm becoming what I most despised" in this song.

5. Bought It
Just like every other song on this record, it has good vocals and good lyrics. Best song on the album!

6. Sit In Glass
It's really fucking hard to find the lyrics for songs from this album, so I'm just gonna pretend this song is literally about sitting in glass. It's a faster song, but not as fast as "Selfish", with typical hardcore-punk slowdown sections. Makes nice use of combining the acoustic guitar and electric guitar together in the verse parts -- feels like there's one thing goin' on in one ear and another thing going on in another.

7. Installing
Originally a B-Side to the "Just a Smirk" single and it was also on the debut LP as well. For some reason I love the line "you can't touch me, I can only touch myself"... even if that wasn't intentionally humorous, I still laugh.

8. Patchwork
This is from the 1990 LP. Really good song. Kinda fast like the previous track. I like the "You Consume" part of the song. I should probably just say about these songs what I said about them on the last review that had these songs on 'em. "Most of the song is relatively fast... blahblahblah... the song ends by slowly fading out."

9. Inside
This was the A-Side to their very first 7" EP. Slower tempo than the previous few songs. Carla does backing vocals in this one, too.

10. Lovegut
The last track on the "Inside" EP. Probably some sort of love song, but I don't have the lyrics. Great emotional vocals from Aaron Stauffer. The tempo is almost grungy.

So, that's "Despised", one of the many pure classics that Seaweed released in the early '90s. It was their first album on Sub-Pop Records, too, and it's still in print. It has a bunch of really good new songs and a bunch of older ones. So, if you like Seaweed, grunge, punk, or old-school emo, then give it a try. It iz legit.


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