The Musical Equivalent of a Toga Party
It seems like Be Your Own Pet has hardly been around long enough to spawn side projects, but damn, hold onto your hat, because here comes a good one. Turbo Fruits brings BYOP’s Jonas Stein and drummer John Easterly together again—sans Jemima Pearl—but plus a new bass player, Max Peebles. Left to their own devices, the boys splice bits of classic rock sludge (“Volcano”), Stones-ish swagger (“The Run Around”) and, erm, tuneful whistling into Red Cross-ish pop punk sound (“Pocketful of Thistles”). Easterly is a powerhouse, rampaging over the toms, careening past the curves and generally creating mayhem. Stein, keeps up, throwing block simple guitar riffs and catchy vocals over the unrelenting beat… It’s a melodic carnage, peaking out in willfully silly, sugar-high triumphs like “No Drugs to Use” and (especially) “Poptart”, and losing its way, somewhat, in falsetto homage to MC5 (“Rambling Rose”). You know the band is sniggering at you when they name their obligatory slow closer “Ballad”, but the song is so blatantly ridiculous (“Well, I’m down/ With a frown”) and so sludgily winning, that you don’t really mind. Here’s a record that’s as adolescent male-centric as a Three Stooges marathon… and just about as amusing.
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// Notes from the Road
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