September 1998
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Harvey Danger --
Where Have All The Merrymakers Gone?

by Jessica Brandt

According to the band's website, this album isn't necessarily new. In fact, it's been out (most likely only in their native Washington) since July of 1997, and then was re-released a-la top 40 radio in May of 1998. At any rate, this review coincides with it's recent POPULARITY, not its statisticly correct newness.

The thing that drew me to this band was the line in the uber-catchy "Flagpole Sitta'" which goes "Been around the world and found that only stupid people are breeding." Yes! YES!! Another geeky, bespectacled, husky young man (read: other than Steven Page of BNL) telling me that I'm not the only one with these sorts of thoughts about the world.

So you've got your catchy "Flagpole Sitta'." Some other okay tracks on this album are "Private Helicopter," which is about wishing for people who used to be part of your life to return, and "Wolly Muffler" which has a pretty cool name.

The first track, "Carlotta Valdez," is a little annoying with singer Sean Nelson screaming the name over and over again, but it's a song about the classic Hitchcock film Vertigo, so we'll give them the benefit of a doubt that their somewhat cultured.

This band's music can, and will, be described as rock and roll, heavily leaning towards punk. The lyrics are smarter than a lot of stuff I've heard on the radio lately. Nelson's voice is definitely different, and I can't decide if I dig it or hate it. I think he'll end up being one of those singers with a very recognizable voice, like Randy Newman or Cat Stevens.

Nothing about this album grabbed me, or really made me want to listen to it too often, and I admit that I shelled out my $12.95 pretty much to hear "Flagpole Sitta'." Yup, I'm so hot that I'm in Hell.....

[C+] [78%]

Purchase Where Have All The Merrymakers Gone? On-line from CDNow

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