Review Summary: The Riverboat Gamblers rock the fuck outSomething to Crow About
is The Riverboat Gamblers best showcase of their balls-out, energetic, kidney-exploding live shows. On the band's timeline it lies nestled perfectly between their older, more deranged and lo-fi garagy punk material and the gritty power pop of To the Confusion of Our Enemies
. The Riverboat Gamblers have managed to string together 11 frantic songs without losing momentum or running dry on hooks.
I will explain what this album is all about in a second. These catchy songs are crafted all crafty-like, they surge forward, then pause briefly for a timely drum build up thing before the last chorus or to better hear vocalist Mike Wiebe yell incoherently before the song surges forward even harder. But this isn't some bull*** record where annoying users can claim how every time they listen they hear new subtle parts of the music and appreciate more the nuances carefully placed by the-shut the fuck up. Here's one way to hear new things: Listen to something else. Like this. If you aren't stoked by the fourth track, or drunk, you should donate your heart to science or vampires because you aren't using it. The lyrical content can be as riveting as it is poetic like on "Rattle Me Bones",
OH YEAH NUMBERONENUMBERONENUMBEROOOOONE
RATTLE ME BONES RATTLE ME BONES
Especially so when you can decipher the words as on the poignant and penultimate "Last to Know" when during the chorus of the album's most melodic anthem Weibe wails, "your suicide note is plagiarism/your suicide note is poorly wrote." What this album is about is the special feeling you get at a raucous live performance. It's the human element of effort and stage presence that seems to be audible in the shouting and sloppy, yet badass, guitar solos. You suspect that even during the recording process, the band was jumping off of amps and diving into the crowd. It's infectious.