Chim Chimís Badass Revenge

Fishbone

Rowdy / Arista, 1996

http://fishbone.net

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 01/17/2015

On this, Fishbone’s first album in three years marked the end of the line for the band as a popular act. Having lost two of their main songwriters, the band also lost their deal with Columbia and hooked up with producer Dallas Austin, best known for his work with TLC. He had launched a new record label and was eager to work with Fishbone. Signing the deal, the band went into the studio. Unfortunately, the band and Austin clashed, wanting to go in a less commercial style, the band persevered and they emerged with a very dark, complex record that did nothing to expand the band’s fanbase.

I remembered absolutely hating this album (save for two songs) the first time I heard it. Thankfully, I went back about four years later and it’s not as terrible as I originally thought. The last half of the record still sucks; fortunately, other songs were a lot better the second time around.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The first single, “Alcoholic,” was a song the band had worked on while still signed to Columbia but with Austin it took on a different path. It has very weak guitar from John Bigham, no horns, and the first signs that Angelo Moore’s vocals aren’t as strong as on previous records. It’s an interesting track but for all the wrong reasons. There’s also a lot of anger on the record on songs like “Riot” and “Monkey Dick.” “Riot” begins with Angelo screaming ‘kill whitey!” – so yeah, there’s that.

One of the major drawbacks of the record is the production. All throughout the disc, the production is very dense. This makes certain songs, such as the title track, sound like compressed shit. It also buries a lot of the instrumentation, which was the band’s strongest attraction. Angelo Moore’s vocals are also not up to par; as he was getting older, his voice reversed itself. He also discovered the theremin, which makes an unwanted and unnecessary appearance on several songs. John Bigham, now the sole guitarist, does an admirable job all throughout, though.

Several songs last way longer than necessary, like the eight-minute “In The Cube,” which should just be ignored, as well as the seven-minute “Sourpuss.” It was songs like this that made hard to sell to a mainstream audience. While the energy is really heavy on several songs, the band is so sonically schizophrenic that it’s really hard to enjoy the album on the whole. “Psychologically Overcast” has gotten better over time and isn’t as forgettable as originally thought. “Monkey Dick” still sucks, plain and simple. Towards the end is where the record starts to dissolve and fall apart. Songs like “Prenut” and others just drain the energy of the record.

Unfortunately, this record did even worse than its predecessor and drummer Fish and John Bigham were the next to leave. Go back and listen to the record and see if it’s still as bad as you remember back in the day.

Rating: C-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


Comments









© 2015 Pete Crigler and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Rowdy / Arista, and is used for informational purposes only.