Ugly Kid Joe
America's Least Wanted


3.0
good

Review

by thechodewarrior USER (27 Reviews)
October 5th, 2011 | 7 replies


Release Date: 1992 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Typical 90's heavy rock done better, and more fun than the norm.

Ah… Ugly Kid Joe (a satire of Pretty Boy Floyd). Everyone who grew up in the 90’s should have heard their smash single Everything About You. It’s a timeless ode about hating your significant other. UKJ was the band that could have been. Their debut album (this) was so successful and well-received upon its release, they were destined for stardom. They even got a spot on Ozzy’s ’92 tour. Everything was look good for UKJ, until lead singer Whitfield Crane fractured his right ankle in Corpus Christi, TX playing a club show. Crane became less mobile on stage, which led to increasingly worse show reception. This led to decreasing sales and popularity, until 1997 when the band split up for personal reasons.

With the obligatory ‘introduction-to-the-band’ opening done, let’s dive right into the album. Opener Neighbor provides us with a great crunchy lead that all the little headbangers could easily get into. Imagine a poppier Black Sabbath guitar section, and you have a good idea what you have in store. Don’t be turned off by that fact however, as the guitars are actually performed very well. The best example being in Goddamn Devil with a dark, plodding guitar lick that creeps its way through the verses in which Crane sings about how awesome it would be to be the devil. More 90’s hard-rock crunch greet us throughout the chorus, until a flashy solo complete with squeals and pinch harmonics to make it as flashy as possible. It’s definitely no Van Halen, but it’s better than most bands I’ve heard are capable of pulling off.

Drums and bass are rather played down throughout America’s Least Wanted. Drummer Mark Davis can sure keep rhythm, but doesn’t really do anything except be the bare backbone of each song, throwing in a mediocre fill every once in a while. The bass is (say it with me) pretty much non-existent, so I’ll just skip it. Crane’s vocals are a definite highlight as it’s obvious how much fun he is having. The bridge sections of Panhandlin’ Prince and Everything About You display this aspect perfectly. Imagine a more pussy version of James Hetfield, and you get a rough of idea of Crane.

Song topics range from wondering why someone is So Damn Cool to being a psychotic killer loose in Disneyland (Madman) to their well-known cover of Harry Chapin’s Cats In The Cradle. It’s definitely worth checking out and proves that not all cover songs are bad. The production is great, everything sounds crisp, and it all flows smoothly. While the bass is never heard, everything else is done very well. All in all, if you’re looking for a fun heavy rock album to reminisce to the ‘90’s about and are tired of Nirvana, give this a shot. If not, at least listen to Everything About You seeing as it is possibly one of the most fun songs ever recorded.



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user ratings (48)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Voivod
Staff Reviewer
October 6th 2011


6196 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Well written, pos.

Crane's voice has nothing to do with James Hetfield, though.

"Busy Bee", "So Damn Cool", "Everything About You", "Cats In The Cradle" are awesome songs, to say the least.

I don't remember the rest any more, but i remember they were enjoyable enough.

Digging: Alkoholizer - Free Beer... Surf's Up!!!

BigHans
October 6th 2011


26454 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

finally someone reviewed this, album fucking rules

rica
October 6th 2011


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

When you're 12 and you listen to something like this, you'll definitely consider it as a hard rock masterpiece and a breath of fresh air from something like...Bon Jovi in the early 90s. I still consider this album as one of my influences. Come Tomorrow is my favorite song next to Busy Bee and the ultra-fun Everything About You.

omnipanzer
October 6th 2011


21618 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"finally someone reviewed this, album fucking rules"


Nu uh

Digging: We Were Promised Jetpacks - Unravelling

random
October 6th 2011


2267 Comments


So Damn Cool and Neighbor just rule hard.

pacedown
May 23rd 2012


174 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Crane is a Very good singer, has a powerful voice and i might say he sings better than any. you can't really compare him with james.

pacedown
May 23rd 2012


174 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

(by the min 03.25) , while back-vocals sing 'world goes by' whit's been rhyming something. can anyone tell me what he's saying , i cant quiet figure it out.

thanx!



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