Sort of stripped down but still an awesome album
“We are no fuckin’ jukebox”, the angered Dicky Barrett shouted in 2002 as he got tired of fans asking the band to play “The Impression that I Get”. The weight of touring and all the insanity revolving around the music industry took their toll and The Mighty Mighty Bosstones had to take a few years off before the band could find back the drive to play music again.
And that is part of the reason “Pin Points and Gin Joints” is packed of songs that were intentionally written so they would be fun to play live for the band. No intentional hits, only totally stripped down ska, the way the band likes it.
It starts off with Dicky explaining to us that graffiti worth reading are rarely written on the right walls (unless it is the Bulgarian Ministry of Interior). And as you catch yourself singing along „Repent! Obey! The end is near!”, you know that the band definitely hasn’t lost its catchy chorus writing skills. We have pretty much the same case in “The Route That I Took” and “You Left Right?” where The Mighty Mighty Bosstones show us that their well of ideas is far from depleted. The last song, “A Pretty Sad Excuse”, lasts for over 6 minutes and is probably the best one here. Half of it is quite quiet and minimalistic reggae that calms you down before it explodes around the 3 minute mark into full blown ska fury. Just brilliant!
Sadly, there is one big “but” about this album. As I said, the band offers some really stripped down ska. That means that the hardcore, punk and even metal elements that put them aside from the pack 15 years ago are pretty much absent. Gone is the insanity of “Devil’s Night Out”, as well as the energy of the hit packed “Let’s Face It”.
But on the other hand, now that the third wave of ska is absolutely dead no one really expects something your little sister would be all over, right? The album is good enough for all the people who know what it is all about to like!
Verdict: 4.75 / 6
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