Gym Class Heroes
As Cruel As School Children


3.0
good

Review

by Channing Freeman STAFF
September 18th, 2007 | 25 replies


Release Date: 2006 | Tracklist


Say what you will about Gym Class Heroes, the hip-hop/pop-punk/pop band that has recently taken music television and your 14-year old sister by storm, but very rarely does a band come along that can sum up the last 35 or so years of American culture in just twelve words. When aliens overrun our world and demand a representation of what great things we have accomplished in the last few decades, we will present this line to them and say, somewhat sheepishly, “Well, this about sums it up.” We have to take our clothes off to have a good time. The aliens will blink once or twice, considering whether or not this race is worth keeping.

And then they will destroy all humans.

Gym Class Heroes’ are sort of like the Fall Out Boy of hip-hop. “Frontman” Travis McCoy leads the band with his clever lyrics and above-average flow, sort of like how Pete Wentz leads Fall Out Boy with his clever lyrics and above-average arrogance. On As Cruel As School Children, he writes about things we can all relate to, such as stalking girls on Myspace, alcoholic girlfriends, and freestylin’ in a bar while tough guys call you a pussy. The problem is, while he’s great at writing verses, he sort of drops off in the choruses. “Shoot Down The Stars” has some of his best lines on the album, but the chorus features such underwhelming lines as “So sexy we are, so sexy we are, we just don’t know it.” In other songs, the band covers up his inability to write a good chorus by throwing in samples of children singing, which never sounds good and is always a bad idea. He makes up for it though with lines such as “The way she praised my balls was vicious, now that’s what I like to call sacrilegious” in “Scandalous Scholastics,” which is the most genius line I’ve ever heard. “New Friend Request” is perhaps the best song on the album, both lyrically and musically. Travis raps over a great beat, spitting lines like “Love it or leave it, but you gotta admit, on a scale of one to ten, I’m the shit,” “This is not an el-oh-el matter,” and “Who cares if we don’t know each other’s last name?” Also he complains about not being in her Top 8. See, I told you we can all relate to this stuff! For the most part, Travis is the main draw to the band, and he fills the part well.

The live instruments are done well. The band crafts some unexpectedly clever music to back their rapper up, setting Gym Class Heroes’ songs apart from other hip-hop artists who just recycle old beats. Perhaps the most skilled member of the band is the drummer, who switches it up with varied rhythms and beats, not just playing the same “boom-boom-chk” beat in every song. The guitarist and bassist don’t play anything to write home about, but they’re skilled enough for what they do, and they at least try to distance themselves from the typical pop-punk music coming out these days, even if it does become slightly overblown at times. In the end, As Cruel As School Children manages to be above average, even though Gym Class Heroes are basically just Fall Out Boy with rapping. There are some great songs in "New Friend Request," "Scandalous Scholastics," and "Clothes Off!," but there are also stinkers like "Biter's Block," "7 Weeks," and the "Sloppy Love Jingles," which are all pretty much throwaway filler. But Gym Class Heroes' flame will probably burn out sometime in the near future, so we might as well just forget their flaws and enjoy their catchiness while it’s still popular.

Besides, one day Travis McCoy will almost save the planet.



Recent reviews by this author
Trophy Scars Holy VacantsThe Menzingers Rented World
La Dispute Rooms of the HouseMiley Cyrus Bangerz
Letlive. The Blackest BeautifulKanye West Yeezus
user ratings (157)
Chart.
3.1
good
other reviews of this album
cjwbball51 (3.5)
Too rock for hip-hop, too hip-hop for rock....


Comments:Add a Comment 
Altmer
September 18th 2007


5652 Comments


okay review, not interested in this band

Ire
September 18th 2007


41829 Comments


I thought you were going to stop submitting reviews.
w/e got my vote. This band poops.

plane
Staff Reviewer
September 18th 2007


6100 Comments


'Shoot Down The Stars' is a good song but the album is pretty boring.

Confessed2005
September 18th 2007


3314 Comments


This is the definition of annoying music.

cometuesday
September 18th 2007


959 Comments


Gym Class Heroes’ are sort of like the Fall Out Boy of hip-hop

Well said.
It's bands like this that are the perfect example of good ideas with very bad execution.

The Jungler
September 18th 2007


4827 Comments


The other album seems way better, though I have yet to listen to this in full.

review is good.This Message Edited On 09.18.07

Fort23
September 18th 2007


2480 Comments


I like this album, Scandalous Scholastics is easily my favorite. Clothes off is a little annoying though.

ToWhatEnd
September 18th 2007


3172 Comments


Yeah this is a pretty darn good review. Definitely not the easiest record to review. Lots of fun and clever stuff here.

Two-Headed Boy
September 18th 2007


4527 Comments


This band is just really boring.

Erratic
September 18th 2007


1120 Comments


[quote="Review"]“The way she praised my balls was vicious, now that’s what I like to call sacrilegious”[/quote]

GENIUS!



Merkaba33
September 18th 2007


702 Comments


[QUOTE=Confessed2005]This is the definition of annoying music.[/QUOTE]

I agree. These groups only irritate me.
These groups should come up with their own music instead of ripping off other artists. Just like that fat Sean Kingston redoing "In the air tonight."

Iluvatar
Staff Reviewer
September 18th 2007


16089 Comments


This is going to turn them into a singles band even more than they already were. "Clothes Off!" was a great psuedo-cover, but other than that this sucked.
OMG CHAN REVIEWED

burton.and.gas
September 18th 2007


641 Comments


ok the beginning quote, is another one of their "samples", they didnt write that lyric they borrowed from Jermaine Stewart and Removed the "Don't" that was in her version , which tbh isn't necessarily insight on their behalf, however good review, bad band.

mynameischan
Staff Reviewer
September 18th 2007


17945 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

haha oh crap you're right. i completely forgot about that.

but i will leave it because without it the review doesn't make sense

blackmilk
September 21st 2007


584 Comments


I didnt see this review wtf!

GCH are so bad D:

kalkal50
September 22nd 2007


2386 Comments


GCH are so bad


Kiran
Emeritus
September 22nd 2007


6002 Comments


Clothes Off! is the new anthem of the world.

Digging: D'Angelo - Black Messiah

kalkal50
September 22nd 2007


2386 Comments


Clothes Off! is the new anthem of the world.


12 year old girls

Kiran
Emeritus
September 22nd 2007


6002 Comments


I take it kalkal is the keep his clothes on kind of guy.

Fair enough.

I guess that's just one of the reasons there are holes in the front of our pants.

kalkal50
September 22nd 2007


2386 Comments


but i don't want a naked civilisation



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy