The Front Bottoms
The Front Bottoms


4.5
superb

Review

by Sean Milo USER (24 Reviews)
September 16th, 2011 | 44 replies | 16,552 views


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: There's just no place in between for us to meet.

7 of 7 thought this review was well written

The Front Bottom's self titled debut album is introduced with the line "please fall asleep so I can take pictures of you and hang them in my room, so when I wake up I feel like everything's alright". In a way, this line is in no way a bad way at all to introduce The Front Bottoms as a band. The band's lyrics often seem to follow the story of a stalker helplessly in love with his high school flame who consistently ignores him and upholds restraining orders. Throughout the album, the band maintains a rather comical atmosphere, balanced between the often ridiculously blunt lyrics that make murdering your own father seem humorous, Brian Sella's nasally voice that sounds halfway between John Darnielle and Jeff Mangum, and the recurring string section and piano that sounds like the band made no effort whatsoever to cover up the fact that it was done on an old Yamaha keyboard for beginner piano players. But despite all of the laughs that the quirky indie-pop duo might produce, the emotional response from this album is nothing less than overwhelming.

Aside from the songwriting, the music is in no way any more sophisticated than you could expect from an acoustic guitar player and a drummer. The opener, Flashlight, has the same fast paced bass-high hat-snare-high hat that you would hear in every single Two Door Cinema Club song released, underneath raw guitar chords and a distressed Brian Sella's simple but often brilliant lyrics. Mathew Uychich's energetic and powerful drumming drives the song and sets the stage for what of the rest of the album will be: a collection of catchy cathartic pop songs. Which stays true on the second track on the album, and probably the band's most well known song, Maps. Although not being in anyway lo-fi, the low production value of the song is quite evident. The keyboard-filtered strings sick out like a sore thumb. But no matter how many things could be found on the album that would seem like it would bog down the music's quality, the music still stays consistently excellent, and there is no song on this record that I feel isn't as good as the previous one.

What makes The Front Bottoms so entertaining yet still emotionally striking is their way of using trivial but unfortunate situations as metaphors for things such as family issues and failed relationships, whcih is portrayed well in the track Bathtub. The song compares sitting in the shower, scrubbing away at your hair with soap without shampoo, tormented by the dry and dirty feeling that the soap leaves behind, yet still trying to convince yoursel that you are "coming clean", which could be a situation that anybody could relate to, trying to solve a problem with something that does not help at all, yet trying to convince yourself that everything is alright and your hair is fine. There is not a single track on this album that I can listen to without feeling what Sella was feeling when he wrote the songs. I have listened to Flashlight countless times, and every single time the last verse comes along with the horn section (an authentic sounding horn section, I might add) and the vocal interplay between the track's verses , I am simply blown away. When a small band, especially from your area, like this makes an album so great, it's so much easier to appreciate. And there's nothing left to do afterwards but wait for them to blow up.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Shrapnel94
September 16th 2011



2213 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Don't let my shitty review deter you from listening to this awesome fucking album

cinaedus
September 16th 2011



26447 Comments


i'm familiar with half of these songs from their EP

Digging: The Suicide Machines - Destruction By Definition

iFghtffyrdmns
September 19th 2011



7047 Comments


nice review sean
did I see Jeff Mangum? ooooo

sixthgoldenticket
November 25th 2011



1176 Comments


flashlight is one of my favorite songs of 2011, good review

alexp9000
May 7th 2012



80 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

this album is so good

thatoneguy726
May 23rd 2012



1632 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It's weird because all of these songs sound so similar, even interchangeable, yet that somehow makes it a better album as a whole

Electric City
Staff Reviewer
July 2nd 2012



15728 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

thought id hate this cuz of the ajj comparisons but hey this is really good

Digging: Alvvays - Alvvays

WeepingBanana
July 2nd 2012



10078 Comments


i saw these guys live but only heard a few of their recordings

i should probably listen to this whole album already

TriggerHappy
July 3rd 2012



7 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review man, love "Flashlight" and "Father"

WeepingBanana
July 26th 2012



10078 Comments


lol why are these guy's secondary genre Post-Punk?

haydenslame
September 29th 2012



352 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

awesome album. but i hate the album artwork.

Spluger
January 9th 2013



1132 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Just stumbled upon the song Legit Tattoo Gun randomly and holy shit it was awesome.

Wheelah
March 19th 2013



756 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This is fucking awesome, somebody rec'd it because I like Tigers Jaw. Lol no similarity but I'm glad they did

Spluger
March 19th 2013



1132 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, they're not very similar but someone who likes Tigers Jaw could very easily get into these guys. Such a good fucking album..

ABjordanMM
May 29th 2013



1379 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Can't get enough of them

Digging: Frank Ocean - Channel Orange

BealTheSeal
August 13th 2013



5 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Excellent album. I would love to see these guys live.

loveisamixtape
August 21st 2013



5932 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

listening to this for the first time and i can already tell i'm gonna love it

Digging: Keep - Hypnosis for Sleep

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 6th 2013



19627 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

wow this rules

Digging: The Who - Tommy

ABjordanMM
November 6th 2013



1379 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

ATARI we seem to agree on a lot of this kind of music lol

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 6th 2013



19627 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

sup man, great minds think alike ;)

if you dig these guys you'd prolly also dig the hotel year and piebald



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