Review Summary: The second album from cheeky chappies 'A' is steady if not exceptional
‘A’s second album doesn’t really depart too much from their first album, opening up with the track ‘For Starters’ See’s Jason singing about the band betting ready to “rock album number 2″ whilst having a small dig at the British media “Cause I’m not Cool Brittania, not getting any younger. They hate me at NME”, the track itself is a decent enough punk tune and a good introduction to the world of ‘A‘
Although the album itself is a slicker product than the first album it doesn’t possess the cheeky charm of ‘How Ace are Buildings’, the tunes are all there, ‘Old Folks’ is still a cracking lament to the dread of getting old and how the youth see the older generation, kind of ironic nowadays seeing a 41 year old Jason singing this. ‘Monkey Kong’ is a live favourite and ‘If it Aint broke….’ is a bouncy sing a long punk tune about ‘A’ sticking to the same formula on ”record number 2″, a theme which seems to cover this album. Sometimes I cant decide whether ’A’ sound bitter that they haven’t made the big time or are just open and honest about how they see themselves within the industry, having one more crack at it. Although it turned out it wasn’t their last crack at it, as they broke into the mainstream on the follow up album.
‘A’ have certainly gone all out with the synthesizers and samples on here, ‘Hopper Jonus Fang’ is overrun with synth beats and ‘Monkey Kong’ and ‘I Love Lake Tahoe’ include plenty of dance beats, I’m not saying its a bad point at all but I think ‘A’ are best when they stick to the punk pop formula of ‘Down on the Floor’ with its bouncy chorus.
‘Warning’ and ‘Don’t Be Punks’ are just annoyances on the album for me, a couple of 1 minute fillers that may as well not have been there. On the other hand ‘Jason’s Addiction’ is probably the most sophisticated ‘A’ had sounded thus far with a slow build up of synthesized vocals and a jazz trumpets, which leads listeners in until halfway through the song the drums and guitars kick in to a pleasing finale.
Looking back on this album I feel like I want to travel back in time and sit the lads down and tell them that they do ‘make it’ on the next record and to calm down about it, I’d leave out the label and management problems they had later on. Wouldn’t want them to get depressed!!