Review : Lagwagon - Duh (Remastered)
SputnikmusicLagwagon is easily one of the best punk bands to come out of the early nineties, and their albums are finally receiving the remaster-and-reissue treatment. For those that don’t know, Duh was Lagwagon’s debut album and featured a very unrefined version of what they would eventually become. It was an album that flirted with serious topics and random humor without any real sense of direction, but it worked. The music itself was raw punk rock with the occasional off-kilter moment, and featured Joey Cape at his grittiest. Of course it also featured a few awkward moments, songwriting that didn’t always seem to reach its potential and a very thin sound overall, but these quirks were mostly endearing. Anyway, on this 2011 reissue of the album, the thin sound has been updated and comes with a bonus disc full of demos and early unreleased tracks.
The first disc is mostly comprised of the original album (in its new remastered form), and it sounds great. The guitars aren’t nearly as thin as they once were and the whole thing seems to have a much fuller sound. That doesn’t mean that these songs suddenly sound as crisp and clear as anything on Resolve or even the original version of Trashed, but they’re still much better than the originals. The main remaining issue is that the thin drum sound is still present, and that some people might still be turned off by the album’s work-in-progress songwriting approach. On the other hand, it was that youthful exuberance that led to such classics as “Beer Goggles” and “Mr. Coffee” – and who can dismiss the fun train wreck that was their cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s “Bad Moon Rising”. The first disc ends with three unreleased tracks, including an acoustic version of “Angry Days” and a previously unreleased track entitled “Demented Rumors”. “Demented Rumors” definitely displays a darker side of Lagwagon due to the clean guitar tone in places and lyrical subject matter, and kind of shares a common spirit with The Offspring’s “Dirty Magic”.
Despite Duh’s improved sound and the inclusion of three unreleased tracks, the second disc will probably be the most interesting for long time fans. This disc gives fans a rare glimpse into the band’s earliest days through the inclusion of rare unreleased tracks and early demos. Surprisingly, the band started life as an angry, abrasive metal/hardcore crossover band. It’s almost a little unsettling to hear the (generally articulate) Joey Cape screaming “***ing bitch!” over metal riffs on “Jaded Ways” or yelling with unbridled anger on the original metal version of “Tragic Vision”. Even the demo versions of tracks such as “Beer Goggles” and “Foiled Again” that were recorded closer to the actual recording of Duh feature a much angrier and in-your-face approach than the versions that eventually made the album. It’s definitely very cool to hear the band’s songs as they were initially envisioned, before they were stripped down for easy punk rock consumption. For example, the demo version of “Bury the Hatchet” features an additional minute of music that includes a pretty soaring guitar solo, and a few additional musical flourishes....full text
MusicdirectAs the first band ever signed to Fat Wreck Chords, Lagwagon displayed a uniquely melodic brand of technical speedy pop punk that eventually established the band as a bellwether of the modern pop-punk movement. With more than 20 years of material at their disposal, the idea of honoring the band's vast influence by compiling a 'best of' album came about. Joey (singer, songwriter and driving force behind Lagwagon) had a decidedly different take on the functionality of a greatest hits collection, believing that there is so much more to a band's legacy than their hits.
Instead of limiting the scope of, and essentially artistically neutering their original material for future generation, the band agreed to go the opposite direction and expose the evolution of Lagwagon. Recognizing the sacramental status of their first five albums (Duh, Trashed, Hoss, Double Plaidinum and Let's Talk About Feelings) within the punk world, the band set to work, culling the archives in order to create one of the most comprehensive audio narratives ever compiled.
The resulting 5 re-releases are nothing short of spectacular. Each album boasts the original track listing alongside demos, outtakes, EP's, B-sides and unstructured jams from the accompanying era (including tons of previously unreleased material), all remastered from the original analog tapes. All 5 albums are also repackaged with expanded artwork including never before seen photos and an oral history provided by the band members.
Originally released in 1992, Duh is the debut full-length album from Lagwagon. Features 14 really cool, fast, melodic songs including a cover of the Creedance Clearwater Revival song "Bad Moon Rising." This Fat Wreck Chords vinyl reissue of Duh consists of a remastered version of the original album plus a remix of the entire Section 8 demo. Also includes a download card for additional bonus content....full text
PunknewsIn a time where the "newest' stuff is glorified and ignorance is a common trait amongst America's youth. We find ourselves searching for something new all the time. In the punk scene we are surrounded by bands who constantly re-invent themselves and others belt out recycled garbage. Bands are held on a golden pedestal and reach "god-like" stature, and often times there are other CD's that just get over-looked by people who really don't care or know anything, except about listening to what everyone else listens to.
In 1992 Lagwagon put out it's debut album enititled Duh. This is in my opinion one of the best CD's in punk rock. Lagwagon has a raw sound that echoes throughout cd. Standout tracks being: "Tragic Vision", "Bury the Hatchet", "Stop Whining", and the cover track "Bad Moon Rising". There isn't much else that you could say about this CD other than it was the dawn of Lagwagon.
So for all of you searching for something new and different...maybe you should go back to the beginning. Definitly check out Duh....full text
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