Review Summary: If Elmer Fudd made a pop punk album with a drummer and bassist that simply won't quit.
Crimpshrine is Jeff Ott on vocals and guitar, Aaron Cornetbus on drums, and many different bassists that include Jesse Michaels as well as Tim Armstrong of Operation Ivy. Crimpshrine originally released Duct Tape Soup in 1989 on a German label.
Duct Tape Soup is about as raw of a pop punk album as you will ever come across. It helped shape pop punk as we know it and was an influence to many pop punk bands of the 90’s such as Operation Ivy and Green Day.
The production on this album is just as poor as you would expect it to be, but it definitely works towards the band’s advantage. It gives it the unpolished sound that a DIY band like Crimpshrine deserves. The vocals are scratchy, the guitar is maybe too distorted, and the drums and bass are as loud as the listener can handle. The poor production is almost a highlight of the album due to the fact it draws out all of the strengths of the band, and helps to hide their weaknesses.
Jeff Ott is one of the most interesting sounding vocalists I have ever heard. When I first listened to the album I thought Elmer Fudd decided to make himself a punk album. The guitar work is extremely average, and sometimes too distorted to even comprehend. There a few highlights though such as the opening riff in Summertime
, the chaotic play in RDC
, and the creative chorus in Can You Feel That"
The Drums are relentless throughout the entire album and are constantly filling would be empty voids with reckless fills. The bass pulls out my single favorite performance on a punk album. It makes every song better but either just playing along with the guitar when the song calls for that, or being busy and wild when the song calls for that. It also has some impressive solo’s throughout the album including the songs Left Outside Again
, and Along The Way
The lyrical theme of the album is about staying positive in the midst of the *** that can be called life. On Pretty Mess
he sings “In the cold dark night we can hide/On the fire escape while the junkies inside/worry about their next fix.” On Free Will
, one of the highlight songs of the album, he challenges the listener to not just accept the ideas shoved down your throat at home or at school but to “Question everything/I’ve accepted without thinking/Make sure I have a basis/for what I believe in.”
Duct Tape Soup is a must listen for real fan of pop punk. The blaring drums and bass, the sloppy guitar, and the heartfelt lyrics will stay with the listener long after they enjoy it.