The Angry Samoans, they're not actually Samoan, but they're angry. The music that they make validates that point, but still no one is sure just what they are angry at. Songs from their sophomore effort, Back From Samoa
would suggest that it is everything that makes them angry. Tackling various issues such as vision, guys named Todd (this would go on to inspire George Carlin), the brain of a furious 20th century dictator, and the father of singer Mike Saunders. What this accomplishes is that it gets their uncompressed point across, and while that point may be riddled with immaturity, incorrectness, and at points downright stupidity; it still is a wonder this was produced and made available for people to purchase.
Of course to make material such as this and to now be viewed as social outcasts and thus exiled from their home scene, the Angry Samoans better have been from a place and time period that puts up with this sort of stuff. Fortunately for the band they were up and rockin' in the time of X
, Black Flag
, and the other Los Angeles based punk bands of the early 80's. While they were from a similar time and to a degree played similar sounding music, the attitudes and content of the Angry Samoans' work was much different than the other bands of LA. While the others barked about "important" issues like being yourself, not taking crap from the man, and living in LA, the Samoans went about things in a more childish way; but with childish comes fast, and the songs do not last long at all.
"It plays like an EP but works as a CD"
That could be the cutely rhyming theme of this album, 17+ minutes spread over 13 songs does not allow a lot of time per listen. Maybe that is the blessing of the album however, as though listening to The Ramones
and Bad Religion
, we know how repetitive and bland bands can get by making the same sound and playing it over and over. Realizing this, and having the songwriting ability of either a smart 8 year old or a cynical 18 year old, co writers Mike Saunders and Gregg Turner craft crude and easy to play tunes that play fast and go fast. The music is indeed not the highlight of this band, though it is proficient in getting songs through and done. Although bassist Todd Homer and drummer Bill Vockeroth hold a steady rhythm section, they are indeed not the featured players in this work. The focus goes to the core of the band, Saunders who throws the words down, and Turner who leads with his guitar.
Like previously mentioned, it is not the music that gets this album across, but it is the words. How bad is it? Well imagine Anal Cunt after 2 weeks of sensitivity class, and then Seth Putnam having a slight relapse for 16 minutes. That pretty much sums up this album, but if its supposedly so bad and so childish, why is it a 3.5? Well just because the lyrics are stupid and the music is generic sounding, it can still be enjoyable. Take the 39 second track, Tuna Taco for instance; "Hit my head, hit my head, hit my head upside the be/Tuna taco around the bed I think I'll take the bus instead". I mean what the hell does that even mean? Its obviously coming home from school but Tuna Taco? around the bed? Why is this one of the highlights of the album? Well that question actually has an answer and its because the delivery from Saunders is always pumping in this 2 verse song. It has the makings of a stupid song, but the way the band pull it out makes it quite amusing. Of course the best song lyrically and musically on this album has to be "homo-sexual", which is an offensive 52 second blast about, well, homosexuals. "Screw your wife in the behind/Tell your kids you're doing fine/God you know you stupid liar/Sucking dick your pants on fire" tells the tale of a closet case who is married and accepted his life as a married man. Of course this man can't get past the Samoans who see right through his disguise and feel the need to broadcast it to the world!
Offensive but not offending lyrics and all, the Angry Samoans definitely hit a peak on this work. Its the ol' in and out in the form of a CD, the words and music moves you and offends you for 17 minutes, but then as soon as it came in, it is gone. While this can't be credited musically due to a large gap of talent that is missing in that department, it still is entertaining either way.