If the album title, the Lite-beer-swilling cigarette-butt-snorting party dude on the cover, or failing that the photo-collage shrine to Taco Land in the liner notes doesn’t clue you in to what the Far Crys are all about, here are a couple more hints: Track three is entitled “She’s a Knockout” and features a verse set at a roller derby, and “A Million Tears” contains the line, “Don’t look now, the boss is gonna have a cow.” Imagine the Ramones, minus the irony and subversion, if Joey and co. had debuted post-Bad Religion, Ataris, and, of course, Bart Simpson, and had the technical ability from the get-go to play straight-faced garage rock instead of stripping it down to two minutes of middle fingers and sucker punches. But among the earnest-sounding Bill & Ted references and comparisons to pseudo-punk bands no one admits to liking anymore, exist some moments of unmistakeable talent and originality. The tight interplay between the guitar and drums alone is enough to salvage most songs, and the enviable enthusiasm with which frontman Dylan Phillips delivers lyrics about ass-kicking and cow-having transforms adolescent idiocy into pure dumb fun. And “Warrior” is just plain awesome.
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