Review Summary: A penny for your thoughts? A thousand more for the cab ride home?
The Pants Situation was an indie-rock band that formed in 2004 in Calgary, Alberta Canada. The production and recording of ‘The Ugly Man’ was an 11-day process that proved to be an extremely positive experience for the band. Working with Calgary producer extraordinaire, Casey Lewis at Echo Base Studio in Calgary, in addition to having Dan Vacon of ‘The Dudes’ join them in the studio, the band flourished and worked hard to make the most of the time they had in the studio with the established Calgary musicians. Now at this point i’m sure you’re wondering who the hell these people are, let’s just say they’re some well-respected musicians in my area. The album is about 50 minutes in length and manages to stay interesting throughout the whole thing. The album’s sound can be described as soulful, indie-rock that isn’t afraid to break some rules and incorporate hard rock style guitar solo’s in tracks such as “Fifty Fifty.”
It starts off with one of my personal favorites, “Leaving Town.” The track follows a more traditional indie-rock formula with a hint of a garage style sound, that makes it difficult not to tap your foot along with it. I can also guarantee this song will be stuck in your head for days whether you like it or not. The band keeps the tempo up with the next track “High Five.” This is our first introduction to the strange keyboard sounds that are placed in many of the songs on the album. It may take some getting used to but in the meantime, the lyrics keep the listener interested. “You don’t have a friend in this world or any other world, breakfast tastes the same when you’re always having toast and gin.” For whatever reason, that line has always stuck out to me. The song also has one of the best choruses that has ever been achieved by a rock band, bold words I know but the only way you will know is to let the song speak for itself.
“The Ugly Man” is another standout track that starts off with a nice, quiet guitar part that plays until about half way when the song takes a turn, making it darker sounding. “Sound/Light” follows up the song with another catchy chorus, catchy instrumentals, catchy everything really. It also features my favorite line on the album:
“Reality is no fun at all, so don’t forget to drink tonight.”
Such a simple line that comes across as very creative and powerful. It is a matter of opinion however where i’m sure some listeners can’t relate to it, so get nothing out of it. Regardless i’m sure you will find at least one lyric that sends shivers down your spine.
‘The Ugly Man’ is an incredible album that has been ignored for too long. It features some of the best instrumental and lyrical work that I have heard in a long time. It’s very relatable to almost anyone plus, it’s so damn catchy how could you not enjoy it?