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Record Reviews


King Of The Beach

This is a double-team review.

International correspondent Nate Ravioli and I have double-teamed before. No, get your mind out the gutter mister — I'm referring solely to life on the basketball court. Like Wesley Snipes and Woody Allen, hustling young bucks out of their hard earned cash. And that's what we're doing here. With words. Sure, those words aren't beautiful, but then again, a sneaky ally-hoop on an illegal pick-and-roll isn't either. In the immortal words of Killer Mike — "that's life".

So, here we share two different points of view on Wavves' new album King Of The Beach. We both agree that it's a brilliant record. That's something we aren't willing to budge on. But everyone enjoys music for different reasons, and not only do people's beliefs on what makes a "good record" differ, but so too do their reflections based on their musical history.

That was something evident as Rav and I discussed the merits of this record. And something which we felt would be (mildly) interesting to share. (Editors note: We know you just look at the numbers and move on. And that's fine.)

Part 1: Ravvv

Blink 182 are one of the greatest bands of all time. Disagree? Fuck you! You don't remember the real Blink 182/are a cunt.

You remember a band that began taking themselves too seriously/began sucking/released an album with a title that was punless/broke up. The band that I'm talking about are the guys that nuded up in their film clips, had dirty porn stars on their album covers, told more dick and shit jokes than my 14-year-old brain could imagine, and released a little album called Enema of The State, aka The Greatest Album Of All Time.

What's that indie sceney cunt blog reader? Blink are gay? I'm a douche? The National rulz hard! EEEEHHHH! WRONG! You know how I know you're wrong? A little fact that Enema Of The State sold the princely sum of 15 MILLION COPIES!!!

I know what you're thinking now, "Album sales don't mean shit! It's all about cred. Blink are a joke." Tell that to Travis Barker as he cruises down the street in his gold plated Bentley, past Bradford Cox giving old men squeezers for pennies.

What the fuck does any of this have to do with Wavves' new album King Of The Beach? The simple answer is that King Of The Beach is the best pop punk record since Enema. In fact it's pop punk perfection, with disgustingly catchy hooks, simple as shit guitar riffs, and the same I-don't-give-a-shit attitude that Blink proudly wore on their tattooed sleeves.

Walking away from the dirty laundry, bong water and cum stains of his bedroom floor and into the studio — where I'm assuming you have to at least go outside before doing a bucket bong — has been a great move by Nathan Williams. It's allowed him to expand his sound and achieve clarity in his recordings, without losing the raw pop elements that made his previous record so sick.

Plus, the fact that Williams finally has a solid band behind him suggests that Wavves really has become a band, and not a novelty act that releases shit-fi albums and goes bat shit at Spanish people. Not forgetting either that the current Wavves line-up corresponds with the classic Blink 182-three-piece-formula, a move that I think has really given Williams a lot of confidence.

What's My Age Again-esque highlights on this record include:

King Of The Beach
The album's namesake, album opener and first sure-fire hit. "You're never gonna stop me, You're never gonna stop me, You're never gonna stop me, You're never gonna stop... King Of The Beach!" are words that will be stuck in your head for fucking decades.

My fave tune on the album is a big 'fuck you' to all the naysayers that wrote Williams off as a one-album-wonder and features the classic stick-it-up-your-ring-hole line, "I'd say I'm sorry, but it wouldn't be shit."

When Will You Come + Baseball Cards
On Wavvves, Williams tossed out a few of ditties to break up the album's flow, but in all seriousness, you'd have to be blitzed out of your mind to enjoy them. The curve balls he fires on KOTB are these two little sweet sprinkles, that bubble away from the punk format and float towards an Animal Collective reacharound, but still fit in with the overall hyper-colour mix of KOTB.

Post Acid
Two minutes and 11 seconds of fun, summer, alcohol, pingers, weed, the beach, babes, love, fairy floss etc, etc.

Take On The World
Williams expresses his doubts about his own song-writing/general human abilities. Shit he would have clearly gone through in the Primavera Fest-freakout aftermath.

Baby, Say Goodbye
Where the fuck did this come from? Is it doo-wop? Is it a Len cover? I don't know, but I love it!

When it boils down to it, King Of The Beach is not going to sell 15 million copies (although, in this day and age not much does). But what it does emulate in the same guise of Blink 182 and Enema of the State is that it comes from a songwriter/band that clearly are not about to take themselves too seriously. They make fun music for the simple reason that making music is fun, and the fact that they can do that and do it successfully fucking rules.

Part 2: Jonny

Firstly, I agree with everything Mr RAV 4 says above. Aside from "funny Blink" being better than "serious Blink". Both are awesome. This isn't a rebuttal. Just eleven cents.

When King Of The Beach leaked I was just as guilty of crapping too much about it's awesomeness as every other loser with a Twitter account and a Pirate Bay invite. The endless terrible puns (King Of The Bleach, Wavves 182 etc), referencing every well-known pop-punk band of the past 20 years and the standard "reminds me of Cobain" memory lane tripping, were warranted — to an extent. But an over-analysis of this kind of music, especially in a nostalgic sense, doesn't really give this album the respect it deserves.

Taking this record solely as a collection of songs, it's easily Nathan "Wavves" Williams' best work yet. Aside from the obvious extra level of care and time taken by Williams in regard to the songwriting and his increased understanding of structure, the production perfectly suits the lo-fi pop nature. There's a much higher level of overall quality, attention to detail and at least a litre of spit, but at the heart of it all there's the no-bullshit songs, which are both instantly appealing and much more accessible.

But, King Of The Beach, as a single body of work, is destroyed by a fewer minor missteps.

The most notable is Convertible Balloon, a song so terrible that it not only becomes an instantly skipworthy low-point, but also makes you either want to go Van Gogh on your ears or at the very least move to Melbourne, where they only listen to Super Wild Horses and The Twerps and other cool bands who stick to the classic drums, bass, guitar, fixie line-up. Just kidding Melbs. Stay real.

But, unlike our Southern Hipster Neighbours, Convertible Balloon is a fucking mess, sounding a little bit like a late night informercial for bagless vacuums and a solid argument against letting Wavves smoke weed and have 24-hour studio access.

One monkey doesn't kill an album though and, aside from a few other consistency issues with the way the album flows from track-to-track, King Of The Beach is a total cunt-banger. Please don't let my old-man "an album is an album" bitterness detract you from that fact that this is the kind of record that makes me want to flip off cops, shred a bowl and get a (temporary) tattoo of Tom getting totally violated by Mark, while DJ AM's plane goes down in the background.

And the one question you came here to ask - "BUT is this album really a whole 1.5 not-as-good as Wavvves?"


Filed Under
Record Reviews
Blink 182


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Who'd of thought Woody Allen would be such an awesome basketball player?! Shame that he can't dunk though. Although he can marry his adopted stepdaughter apparently. Woody Harrelson on the other hand, that guy stinks at throwin around the ol' pumpkin round.

1 decade ago


Tell that to Travis Barker as he cruises down the street in his gold plated Bentley, past Bradford Cox giving old men squeezers for pennies.


1 decade ago


"Tell that to Travis Barker as he cruises down the street in his gold plated Bentley, past Bradford Cox giving old men squeezers for pennies.



1 decade ago


""Tell that to Travis Barker as he cruises down the street in his gold plated Bentley, past Bradford Cox giving old men squeezers for pennies.




1 decade ago


it's true, deleting "convertable balloon" from the tracklist makes for a much better album. desire for earstabbing diminishing...

1 decade ago

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