Review: Pissed Jeans | King of Jeans

Sub Pop (2009)
By MICHAEL PATRICK BRADY  |  August 3, 2009

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Billy Joel told us that the future of Allentown was bleak, but he could never have predicted that out of the decaying Pennsylvania steel mills and a crumbling economy, a sound as ugly and exciting as Pissed Jeans would emerge. Their third album is classic hardcore punk: loud, thrashing, and out of control, but with just enough goofy humor to make it easy to swallow.

They're angry, not about politics or the economy, but about mundane, everyday things blown up to hyperbolic proportions. "Dream Smotherer" is just a song about being really, really tired, but when singer Matt Korvette ( Kosloff) launches into growling invective against those keeping him from sleep, it's not hard to empathize. His sneering, sarcastic vocals turn sludge into gold on "False Jesii Part 2" and "Half Idiot," as he shifts between unbridled screaming and restrained bellowing.

Even though the din raised by Bradley Fry's stinging, overdriven guitar can render the band's message incomprehensible, the spirit and energy behind it transcend articulation. This is the sound of compounded irritation, lashing out and ranting about every damn thing in sight and feeling great about unloading all that negative energy on an unsuspecting world.

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